Method unveils liquid laundry bottle made from 100% PCR PET

Method (San Francisco, CA), the leading innovator in premium, eco-friendly household and personal care products, has launched a major breakthrough in the laundry category by introducing its new 4X Concentrated Detergent product in a 53-oz polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottle containing 100% post-consumer recycled (PCR) PET resin from Amcor Rigid Plastics (Ann Arbor, MI).

The industry’s first liquid laundry bottle made from 100% PCR PET aims to increase visibility on the shelf with its sleek, transparent container.

Method's PET liquid laundry bottleWell-known for its brightly colored hand wash and all-purpose cleaning formulations displayed in clear PET bottles, Method has broken new ground in the liquid laundry detergent aisle, according to Joe Hunter, Director of Packaging for Method. “This new PET offering in the liquid laundry segment resonates with the rest of our brand portfolio in hand wash and all-purpose cleaners,” said Hunter. “This is an important achievement in a market that has previously been predominately limited to opaque high-density polyethylene (HDPE) containers.”

The 4X Concentrated liquid detergent is the latest addition to Method’s existing portfolio of 8X Concentrate Liquid Detergent which is packaged in 10-, 20- and 30-oz HDPE containers.

To combat compatibility and color stability issues that has long plagued the liquid laundry detergent market, Amcor provided product compatibility testing with Method’s liquid formula product to ensure package stability on the store shelf. Also, the company did initial testing on preforms and further stability testing revealed no issues, according to Matt Lewis, Senior Development Engineer for Amcor Rigid Plastics. “Through our strong partnership with Method we have developed a long line of unique PET packages,” said Lewis. “We were able to again push the envelope and deliver an important advancement in bottle design, this time for the liquid laundry detergent market.”

Amcor’s design engineering team worked closely with Method’s industrial design team to develop a bottle with Method’s signature look which could be stretch blowmolded without a handle.   One particular challenge that came up during the design process was the mold design due to the cross corner parting line split and the highly functional ergonomic hand grips molded on the back side of the bottle. This was fixed by a variable radius parting line that allowed the part to release from the blowmold with no plastic entrapment.
 
Another challenge that arose was the neck design due to the two-piece polypropylene (PP) pour spout and cup closure. The pour spout required orientation to the front of the bottle and once in that location could not be rotated by the removal of the pour cup. This was complicated because the PP closure was designed for an HDPE bottle. The lug design on the neck went through a series of design trials to find the best option. In addition, a small adjustment was made to the bottle’s shoulder height to accommodate the filling process.

The 53-oz container with 100% PCR PET has allowed Method, which was founded in 2000 on a strong environmental platform, to gain major sustainability benefits. “Among our primary business priorities is reducing the environmental impact of all our products,” explained Hunter. Analysis using Amcor’s ASSETTM life cycle assessment tool showed that by using 100% PCR resin, the package’s life cycle energy consumption is reduced by 78% and its carbon footprint is lowered by 35% versus a virgin PET alternative.

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