Clean groundwater is highly valuable to Altia as a central ingredient for producing alcoholic beverages. At the Rajamäki factory, Altia has access to remarkably extensive and naturally high-quality water resources. The groundwater percolating through the extension of the Salpausselkä esker is suited for use in alcoholic beverages as it is, unprocessed.
In the late 1800s, Rajamäki was selected as the location of the factory for two reasons: it was situated along the Hanko-Hyvinkää track and had a groundwater source producing a great deal of high-quality water. The soil is Salpausselkä esker moraine, through which the clean groundwater percolates. The water reserves in the Rajamäki ground are substantial – the Rajamäki groundwater area is estimated to form about 8,000 m3 of groundwater in a day.
In the early stages, all the water required by the factory was taken from an open spring next to the factory. Today, the water used at Altia’s Rajamäki factory is groundwater pumped from underground groundwater reserves through a groundwater intake plants. Altia owns six groundwater intake plants.
Water not processed in any way
Rajamäki water is so clean that it is not necessary to use any type of chemical or physical cleansing procedure with the water used in the production of alcoholic beverages. The water is of high quality and meets all standards as it is.To monitor the quality of the water, a monitoring programme was created; samples of water are taken in the water intake plants four times a year and in the water usage points every month.
Altia can also identify its water. If there is a reason to suspect counterfeit, Altia is able to identify in its laboratory whether any “foreign” water was possibly used as raw material of the alcoholic beverage. The composition of the water and the ratios of the substances in it stay almost constant, and each groundwater area and other raw water sources have their own characteristics from which the water can be identified.
Altia protected mires as private conservation areas
Altia owns about 1,100 hectares of land around the Rajamäki factory. Through land ownership, the company is able to monitor construction and other operations in the area and, thus, protect the groundwater in the groundwater areas of its pumping stations.
To protect groundwater, Altia has also established private conservation areas in its wetlands. Situated near the Rajamäki factory water intake plants, Kurkisuo mire, of which Altia owns 144.1 hectares, is currently a private conservation area of the company. Kurkisuo is a significant environment for endangered species of plants and types of wetlands. It is one of the raised bogs of coastal Finland and one of the ten nationally important mires in Finland. Altia also owns a private 7.5-hectare Kaunissyrjä mire conservation area in Hyvinkää’s Petkelsuo as a part of a national mire conservation programme.