Yesterday, Colombian brewer Bavaria & Cia, a business unit of global beverage maker ABInBev, announced that it would begin construction of a $413 million USD brewery in Palmar de Varela, Atlantico, approximately one hour south of Colombia’s coastal city of Barranquilla.
The new plant is scheduled to go online in the summer of 2024, and according to Bavaria, will create 1,500 construction jobs, then employ 350 plant workers supporting 7,000 additional indirect jobs. The beer factory is being designed to be completely carbon neutral, and Bavaria has committed to operate it with solar electricity.
The move is an additional vote of confidence for the greater Barranquilla metropolitan area that has been quietly making progress with less attention than Colombia’s more famous cities of Bogotá and Medellín.
The Palmar de Varela brewery will turn out Bavaria brands such as Águila, Poker, and Club Colombia, all Pilsner style beers popular in hot weather climates.
Colombia’s President Gustavo Petro, applauded the decision, saying: “We all make change, total peace is with businessmen, rural people, and workers, women and youth. I thank Bavaria for the investment that will generate employment and contribute to the energy transition.”
Sergio Rincón, president of the beer company (above photo), said: “We firmly believe in Colombia and in the great transformations that the private sector can generate for the benefit of the country. With this new plant, the company is betting in the long term on a significant expansion of the industry. The brewery will produce the national brands most loved by Colombians such as Águila, Poker and Club Colombia, among others.”
“I welcome the arrival of Bavaria to our municipality with great satisfaction. I am sure that it will generate a positive impact in the finances of the municipality and in the social sphere. Thanks to these resources we will be able to continue promoting the development of the municipality with the social investment that will impact the quality of life of the residents of Palma. In the social aspect there will be employment opportunities,” added Palmar de Varela’s mayor, Galdino René Orozco.
The new brewery will add to Bavaria’s eight existing Colombian breweries, two malting facilities, and a label printing factory. Added Rincón: “It fills me with pride to share this good news with the country on these very special dates. We Colombians deserve a future full of hope, celebrations and progress, and this new bet is, without a doubt, a great reason to toast…it is a sample of the spirit of a company like Bavaria, which, after multiple contributions in favor of progress over more than 130 years, continues to undertake, betting on growth and innovation in our processes”.
With 4,000 employees supporting 80,000 indirect jobs, 133 year old Bavaria has breweries in the Colombian cities of Tocancipá, Tibasosa, Yumbo, Itaguí, Bucaramanga, and Barranquilla. It also has two malting facilities in Cartagena and Tibitó, and a label factory in Yumbo.