After being forced to close over a year ago, Swiss glass manufacturer Vetropack has resumed its glass packaging production at its PrJSC Gostomel site near Kiev, Ukraine. According to the company, one of the two remaining melting tanks has been brought to temperature and is being filled since May 25th. The first glass is expected to roll off the production line in June.
In late February 2022, shortly after the production was halted for safety reasons, the facility—equipped with three melting tanks at the time—sustained severe damage by a Russian attack. One of the tanks was destroyed in the process. Following extensive clean-ups and repairs, the first tank is now ready to resume operations.
Safety remains paramount
Vetropack pledges that the protection of the workforce is a top priority during the resumption of the operations. According to the statement, the current situation is being closely monitored, and in case of any uncertainty, an evacuation will be carried out. This was the case in February 2022. An evaluation is consistently conducted, taking the overall situation into account. The site is also prepared for potential emergency scenarios, with various plans developed to ensure energy supply in the event of power and natural gas outages.
Solidarity with employees
Prior to the war, Vetropack employed approximately 600 people in Ukraine. However, due to the damage caused, the company had to lay off about two-thirds of its workforce. In order to resume production, Vetropack has hired 139 new employees, primarily former employees of the site.
To support the heavily affected employees, the Vetropack Gostomel Foundation was established in the summer of 2022. Employees from other locations, business partners, and customers donated a total of 960,000 Swiss francs (about US$ 1m). The first payouts were conducted in April 2023. PD