World’s Largest Scotch Whisky Packaging Site Celebrates 40 Years

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The world’s largest Scotch Whisky packaging site has celebrated 40 years at the forefront of the global industry.

Diageo Shieldhall opened in April 1979  in Renfrewshire with little prominence but now stretches across 43 acres, produces 27 million cases of Scotch Whisky each year, bound for 180 countries.

The company contributes to 25% of the worldwide Scotch Whisky industry and celebrated its 40 birthday four days ago.

Workers were joined on site and congratulated  towards contribution towards the Scottish economy by Scotland’s Economy Secretary Derek Mackay and Paisley and Renfrewshire North MP Gavin Newlands.

Over the 40 years of production at Shieldhall has produced over 600 million cases of Scotch whisky.

The company employs over 500 people at the site, which has seven high speed bottling lines and a 600-bottle per minute line that is the fastest in the industry.


Gavin Newlands MP (far left) and Economy Secretary Derek Mackay (far right), are shown around the Diageo Shieldhall bottling hall by Diageo employees George Smith and Lucy Bell

Some of Scotland’s most popular Scotch have been created at the site such as Johnnie Walker,  the brand’s iconic Red Label and Black Label.

Economy Secretary Derek Mackay said: “Scotch Whisky is one of Scotland’s greatest global exports and the Diageo Shieldhall plant has played a vital role in making that success possible.

“I want to congratulate the staff – past and present – for their huge contribution not just to Diageo, but to Renfrewshire and to Scotland’s economy.

“I wish the company every success for the future and I am sure the staff at Shieldhall will continue to be at the forefront of Scotch whisky for years to come.”

Gavin Newlands MP said: “Congratulations to Diageo on this significant anniversary. For 40 years the facility at Shieldhall has provided good, skilled, well-paying jobs for people from Renfrewshire, and beyond.

“We can be proud of our country’s ability to punch well above our weight in the food and drink sector with Scottish produce recognised the world over for its quality.

“Shieldhall has played a major part in this these past four decades and I look forward to them being here for many more years to come.”

Lucy Bell, engineering apprentice, and George Smith, one of Diageo’s longest-serving employees celebrate Diageo Shieldhall’s milestone 40th anniversary

David Cutter, Diageo President Global Supply and Procurement, welcomed Mr Mackay and Mr Newlands to the site and introduced them to staff, including long-serving employees and apprentices.

He said: “Shieldhall is one of the most important locations for Diageo’s global Scotch whisky business and it is also one of the great engine rooms of Scottish exporting.

“More Scotch whisky is packaged and exported to the world from Shieldhall than anywhere else and we are extremely proud of the contribution this plant has made to the global growth of Scotch.

“That is mainly down to all the people who have worked here over the past 40 years and who have all played an enormous role in making Shieldhall one of the most efficient and productive manufacturing plants in the world.”

AnnMarie Phillips, Operations Director at Shieldhall, said: “I am incredibly proud of everyone who works here at Shieldhall, from the long-serving employees who have been here since the plant opened in 1979, to our most recently recruited apprentices.

“We’re delighted to mark this anniversary and to celebrate the efforts everyone has made to the success of the site.

“We are now looking forward to the next chapter of our journey and to keeping Shieldhall at the forefront of Scotch whisky and competitive global manufacturing.”

 
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