Duvel Moortgat is to spend over EUR16m (US$19.4m) over the next two years to boost capacity at its breweries in Belgium and the US as it looks to build on a buoyant performance in 2005.

The Belgian brewer said yesterday (21 March) that it plans to spend EUR10.5m modernising its brewery in Belgium and EUR6m doubling capacity at its Ommegang brewery in New York. Duvel also reported an 8.2% in consolidated turnover for 2005, reaching EUR66m.

The company saw turnover from its overseas operations leap 26%, thanks to rising sales from its Czech brewing arm Bernard. Sales in France rose 19%, sales in the US rose 40%, while sales in the UK jumped 47%. Duvel also outpaced a stagnant beer market in Belgium with a 3% increase in sales.

The brewer said it saw 2006 revenues rising by 6-8% and a net profit increase of 7-10%. However, Duvel added, the forecasts were dependent on the outcome of price talks with supermarkets in the Netherlands. The Dutch beer market has been hit by a supermarket price war in the last 12 months, with Grolsch also having to renegotiate its supply contracts with off-trade outlets.