Peru’s largest brewery is also making a name for itself in carbonated soft drinks. The Union of Peruvian Breweries Backus and Johnston, commonly known simply as Backus, has been producing beer since 1879, and has been part of the SABMiller group for the last nine years. One of its operation bottling CSDs was recently designated the most efficient in the entire global group.
SIPA can take some of the credit for that, since it supplied the complete bottling line. It also supplied the stretch-blow molding equipment used by Backus’ in-house bottle supplier, SMi. Three brands are bottled on the line: Guaraná, which contains extract from the guarana fruit native to the Amazon basin; Viva, a type of cream soda; and Maltin Power, which Bakus says is the only natural malt drink enriched with vitamins “that nourishes and gives you energy to overcome any physical or mental challenge.”
Two SFR rotary stretch blow molding systems, one with eight cavities, the other with 12, supply the filling line directly via a pneumatically operated transport system. The filling line itself comprises an ISOFILL isobaric filling monoblock, a DRINKMIX continuous mixing unit, labelling and bundling units from SIPA partners in Italy, and a FASTLAYER palletisation system.
The Backus and Johnston brewery was founded in 1879 by Jacob Backus and John Howard Johnston in the Rímac District in Lima. The company operated as a British corporation until 1954, when it was incorporated in Peru and renamed as Cervecería Backus & Johnston S.A. In 1994 Backus and Johnston acquired a controlling interest in a rival brewer, the National Beer Company (Compañía Nacional de Cerveza S.A.), and in 1996 four breweries, including Backus and Johnston, merged to form Unión de Cervecerías Peruanas Backus y Johnston. Four years later, the Brewery Company of Southern Peru (Cervesur) joined the group.
In recent years, Backus has enjoyed significant growth in sales of its soft drinks as well as its mineral water (which happens to be the only one produced in Peru). It now produces around 2.5 million hectoliters of soft drinks and water per year. The company has done well, not only because of market conditions, but also because it has an excellent team working with quality equipment.
Backus works with a focus on sustainable development, aiming to create shared value with its supply chain partners and the communities in which it operates. Plus, it strives hard to ensure that its personnel feel part of success. “Everyone in the operation must try, within their own sphere of activity, to optimise quality, quantity, and cost,” says Jorge Ayestas at Backus.