Constellation Europe has officially opened its European bottling and warehousing hub in the UK, intended to increase efficiency and cut carbon emissions.

Constellation Europe, a subsidiary of California's Constellation Brands, said yesterday (17 February) that the 80,000 square-metre warehouse, known as Constellation Park, has opened in Avonmouth, near Bristol in the west of England.

The facility, which the company claims is the largest wine warehouse and distribution centre in Europe, will handle the bottling of "high-volume Australian brands", which will arrive in the UK in bulk wine format.

Among the equipment housed at the plant are two bottling lines and three bag-in-box lines, with the company aiming to bottle 9m nine-litre cases a year at the facility.

"The switch to UK bottling from Australia will reduce transport related CO2 emissions by more than a third for products sold in the UK," Constellation said.

The hub, which has cost the company EUR50m (US$62.9m), will employ around 300 and is expected to be fully operational by 1 May.