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Coca-Cola India’s bottling arm Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages has suspended manufacturing at three locations in India citing absence of “long-term economic viability”, which may affect at least 300 employees.
The company has suspended manufacturing at Kaladera near Jaipur (Rajasthan), Vishakhapatnam (Andhra Pradesh) and Brynihat (Meghalaya).
“The decision to close down a plant is a business decision taken on the basis of its long-term economic viability and market demands of the products being manufactured at that particular plant,” a source told PTI.
“Accordingly the decision to suspend manufacturing at these locations including Kaladera was made. At these locations all operations except for manufacturing is continuing,” the source said.
When contacted a Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages Pvt Ltd (HCCBPL) spokesperson said: “Like with any other manufacturing organisation, we are going through a process of consolidation where new state-of-the art facilities are being built and existing production capacities are being optimised.
“These decisions are taken in keeping with plant capacity utilisation considerations, based on the market demands and projections,” he added.
“With regard to our Kaladera plant in Rajasthan, while we have currently suspended manufacturing, we are continuing with all other operations at Kaladera. We also retain the licence to produce at this Plant, which is testimony to the fact that should there be a change in demand and volume, we may utilise this latent capacity at the Kaladera plant,” the spokesperson said.
HCCB has 54 plants in India of which 24 are franchise plants, 25 are company-owned and 5 are co-packers. Coca Cola India sells a range of soft drinks including Coca-Cola, Thums Up, Fanta, Limca, Sprite and Maaza, among others.
In 2012, the Atlanta-based beverages major had announced to invest about Rs. 28,000 crore (USD 5 billion) along with its partners in India by 2020 on various activities including setting up of new bottling plants.