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PLANT MANAGEMENT


I


nnovation and tradition go hand-in-hand at mineral water producer San Benedetto. Originally working in the sale of household appliances, the company founder had the idea that the refrigerator’s success could have a positive impact on the consumption of mineral water. He turned out to be right. The company recently celebrated its 60th anniversary. As the name suggests, the company’s water  Acqua della salute (‘healthy water’), it quickly made a local name for itself, but obstacles to the national market remained. “Revenues grew, but distribution was


THIRST SUCCESS for Alexander Marzahn &


only regional. Building a new production  recalls Enrico Zoppas, who took over the company together with partners following the death of the founder in 1971. “The company was losing money and no one  of the board. Zoppas was nevertheless convinced of the potential. He entered the business and not long after landed a coup with the introduction of returnable bottles. Practically overnight, consumer acceptance catapulted the regional player to the national stage.


Tiziana Perchiazzi reveal how an Italian beverage producer outpaced some of its competitors thanks to modern process engineering


Less than 10 years later, the


introduction of recyclable PET bottles led to the next revolution. In 1983, San  in Italy to sell mineral water in plastic  integration enabled full automation of the production line. A further innovation followed in 1993 when the company put a complete, aseptic bottling system for non-carbonated beverages into operation. More than just a milestone in quality


assurance, it also opened the door to emerging lifestyle products such as iced tea and energy drinks. The bold and foresighted


 Benedetto is successful in every segment of the soft drink industry, from mineral water and sweetened drinks to children’s drinks and tonic water. Although the company relies on a modern sales distribution network that stretches from vending


machines to restaurants, the production chain, from manufacturing to bottling, remains under its own control. “We use state-of-the-art process plants and continuous improvement processes to  plant manager, Dr Rosario De Marchi. “The pursuit of a good balance between  


STRONG PARTNER A key factor here is process automation. “With Endress+Hauser, we found a strong partner with whom we have a lot in common, particularly a vision  Marchi. The vision is not just about reliably monitoring the process and quality parameters in-line. It also involves


 day using 44 systems across San Benedetto’s 11 production facilities


22 www.engineerlive.com


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