The Kirin Holdings subsidiary has expanded its Little Creatures brewery

The Kirin Holdings subsidiary has expanded its Little Creatures brewery

Lion has expanded its Little Creatures craft brewing operations in Australia with the opening of a new AUD60m (US$54.6m) site. 

The Australasian group, a subsidiary of Kirin Holdings, cut the ribbon on the new brewery and hospitality venue in Geelong, Victoria, yesterday (9 December). The site, which will brew and distribute Little Creatures' beers, will double the craft brewer's production capacity in Australia, Lion said. 

“We’ll be able to produce beer closest to where our future growth will come from – the eastern states,” said CEO of Lion, Stuart Irvine. “Beer is always best consumed fresh, and this allows us to provide fresher product to the eastern market.” 

The brewery has a number of environmentally-friendly features, such as waste heat collection and a carbon dioxide recycling system, the company said. It is expected to produce around 1.25m cartons of beer in its first year. 

The 500-capacity hospitality venue, part of the development, will serve the full range of Little Creatures beers and “shareable” food, the group added. 

Lion fully acquired Little World Beverages, owner of Little Creatures, last year, having previously had a 36% stake in the brewer.