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Plastic closure molder Portola has been awarded 100% of the milk closure business of supermarket chain Kroger. Officials at the processor would not reveal exact details as to the size of the contract but did say this is a multi-million dollar deal for Portola.

PlasticsToday Staff

July 14, 2011

2 Min Read
Plastic packaging: Portola wins Kroger’s caps business

Plastic closure molder Portola has been awarded 100% of the milk closure business of supermarket chain Kroger. Officials at the processor would not reveal exact details as to the size of the contract but did say this is a multi-million dollar deal for Portola.

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Portola's DBJ closures have won Kroger's milk, tea and juice business.

Portola (Naperville, IL) reckons it won the business due to its patented 38mm tamper-evident, drop band, plug closure, marketed as the DBJ. Last year Portola announced it had shipped its 6 billionth of these screw-on caps. Kroger is in the process of converting all of its fresh milk bottle brands to these closures, as well as its juices and teas.

For Portola, the contract will drive investment in additional capacity, according to Roy Robinson, vice president of business development at Portola, in answer to questions from PlasticsToday. He said that prior to the new contract, Portola had been handling about 50% of Kroger's closure business for milk, juices and teas. Kroger has been a Portola customer for more than two decades.

Kroger is the largest traditional grocery retailer in the U.S., with 2458 supermarkets and multi-department stores in 31 states under two dozen local banner names including Kroger, City Market, Dillons, Jay C, Food 4 Less, Fred Meyer, Fry's, King Soopers, QFC, Ralphs and Smith's.

According to Portola, independent consumer research conducted individually by both Kroger and Portola revealed a clear preference for this closure. "Consumers prefer a drop band that stays on the bottle versus a tamper-evident feature which requires that you tear off a band and then have to dispose of it. Additionally, consumers prefer the DBJ's easy opening and resealing attributes," said Robinson. Portola molds the 2.6-gram high-density polyethylene closures in all four of its North American facilities.   

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