Radnor Hills: filling line for water and soft drinks
Green hills, a mild climate and an exceptionally pure water source. This is the backdrop for the project we created for Radnor Hills, which includes a filling line for water and soft drinks in glass and a filling machine for PET bottles.
The story of Radnor Hills began when the founder, William Watkins, came back from Newcastle University armed with a degree in agricultural and food marketing. His father discovered a water source on the family farm in the Welsh hills and came up with the idea of providing water for his cattle, but the water tasted so good that William decided it deserved a wider audience. Twelve months later, he was supplying British Airways with cups of mineral water and officially launched Radnor Hills in 1990.
Since then, the company has continued to evolve, now producing a wide range of still, carbonated and flavoured soft drinks.
Radnor Hills and CFT: filling line for water and soft drinks
We decided that the best person to talk to about the CFT project created for Radnor Hills was the founder of the Welsh company, William Watkins.
1. William, how did you find out about CFT and what are the reasons why you chose to entrust us with your projects?
I found out about CFT because I needed to carry out two projects which required two filling machines and I thought the quality of your machines was really good. I had seen your solutions at various trade fairs, and getting references from other manufacturers who had installed CFT filling machines and were really pleased with them was one more reason to look into it.
I was very impressed right from the start when I saw the CFT equipment. It was solid, clearly well-designed and well-built. You could see that.
So we decided to put our trust in you to supply a filling line for water and soft drinks in glass and a filling machine for PET.
2. How is the CFT solution put together and how does it meet your requirements?
Our primary requirement was to revamp our filling lines.
The main project that we brought in CFT for was the provision of a new filling line for water and soft drinks (carbonated and still) in glass bottles.
The glass line we had before making this investment was very outdated. As a result, we had several reasons for modernizing it, including the need for an automatic depalletizer, the ability to handle two types of caps and improved speed.
CFT’s proposal for the new filling line, for water and soft drinks (carbonated and still) in glass bottles, was as follows:
- Automatic depalletizer from below (Mod. CFT 151), capable of handling numerous bottles of different sizes
- In-line carbonation and mixing unit (Mod. SYM MIX A10), suitable for preparing the bases for various drinks (water, CO2 and flavoured syrup)
- A counter-pressure filling machine (Mod. Master RS Tronic) with servo-controlled electronic valves and turrets for handling two types of caps, Ropp (Roll-on Pilfer Proof) and crown, with a capacity of 12,000 bph.
The second project involved the supply of a CFT filling machine suitable for filling water and soft drinks (carbonated and still) in PET bottles, to be inserted into an existing line:
- Automatic monoblock (Mod. MASTER RS SC) consisting of a counter-pressure filling machine with separate air return system and capping machine for plastic screw cap
You can tell when you have a solid, well-designed machine that will be around for a long time, and this is where I feel we are with CFT.
What I didn’t realize before is just how good the mixing part would be. The CFT mixer-carbonator is of very high quality.
3. Did you come across any challenges during the project that CFT helped you overcome?
There was a small problem when the glass filler arrived, but there can sometimes be hiccups when installing machines. The most important thing in these cases is the reaction to the difficulties and seeing how they were handled gave us an additional insight. In fact, I believe that CFT dealt with the problem and solved it very well. We are now exactly where we wanted to be with the machines, which are working wonderfully right now.
4. Would you put your trust in CFT for another new project?
I am pleased to say that my instincts proved correct in relying on CFT and so the answer is a resounding yes!
Matteo Avanzi, CFT Regional Sales Manager
William Watkins, Radnor Hills Founder & Owner