This Sunday, 25 September, marks 50 years since the first Coca-Cola product made in Northmead, NSW rolled off Can Line 1. It was a humble can of Tab, the predecessor of Diet Coke and Coca-Cola No Sugar – both popular favourites today.
Plenty has changed since 1972. Technology has allowed us to make more beverages, more quickly, and sustainability is embedded across all aspects of our operations, from our approach to water stewardship through to our use of recycled content in our packaging.
Plenty has also remained the same, explains Orlando Rodriguez, Vice President of Supply Chain – Australia at Coca-Cola Europacific Partners:
“Our commitment to great people, great service and great beverages has been unwavering. At Northmead, in the heart of Sydney's west, we now make 250 different products from 20 different brands and boast a headcount that exceeds 380 dedicated employees with a remarkable average tenure of 17 years.”
Half a century of operations is no mean feat. To celebrate the milestone, our team came together for a special gathering.
Cutting the cake were Van Ke Nguyen (our longest serving employee at Northmead, having been with us for 41 years) and Priscila Pacheco Maciel (our newest team member on-site), alongside Orlando Rodriguez and guest Jose Antonio Echeverría (Chief Customer Service and Supply Chain Officer at CCEP).
We asked some of our Northmead employees to reflect on what makes Coca-Cola Europacific Partners such a great place to work.
Fast facts about CCEP Northmead
The first product to roll off the line at CCEP’s Northmead site was a can of Tab (the predecessor of Diet Coke and Coke No Sugar, being Coca-Cola’s first ever low-or-no calorie cola drink).
It rolled off the production line on 25 September 1972, followed by world-famous Coca-Cola, which has continued to be made here ever since.
The site has grown significantly over the years and has a surface area of 40,000 m2 – our second largest site by footprint, volume and headcount in all of Australia (Richlands, QLD is the largest).
Northmead is the 13th largest volume producer of all CCEP sites around the world – taking in Europe, Australia and the Pacific.
Not just Coke – beverages from approx. 20 different brands or sub-brands are made here today; a total of 233 different SKUs.
The product we make the most of at Northmead is Coca-Cola No Sugar – it’s one of the fastest growing products in our beverage portfolio.
Other beverages made and bottled here include Mount Franklin, Kirks, Fanta, Cascade, Pump, Mother, Deep Spring and Neverfail.
A point of pride for the team at Northmead is Can Line 1, which was built in 1972. It’s one of the oldest operating canning lines at CCEP sites in all of Australia and, thanks to upgrades over the years, it’s also one of the quickest lines and runs at 2000 cans per minute!
Beverages made here are mostly sold in NSW – anywhere from 120 to 170 trucks come and go from the site each day.
We currently have more than 380 employees at Northmead and are working hard to boost female representation in supply chain, having increased the number of women at Northmead by 3% in the last 12 months.
We are a family-oriented team – we are just as committed to each other as we are to making great beverages, and we help people grow their careers in supply chain, from the moment of hire to retire.
This culture part of the reason why our people stay here so long. We have multiple employees that have been here for over 40 years and have an impressive average tenure of 17 years.