Another alcohol brand has looked beyond glass to offer a new line in PET packaging. Andrew Peller Limited has introduced skinnygrape spritzers in a 330ml barrier PET bottle from Amcor Rigid Plastics. The beverage was previously only available as a low-calorie wine in a 750ml glass bottle.
The custom PET container differentiates skinnygrape from other products in this highly competitive RTD category, according to Sarah Ripley, national brand manager for Andrew Peller Limited. "The slender bottle is extremely comfortable to hold," Ripley said. "Our consumers are mostly women and this bottle sits comfortably in their hand." Andrew Peller Limited moved to a single-serve size for the low-calorie spritzer based on an unmet demand for a wine-based low-calorie option in the RTD category. "We think the packaging is really fun and speaks to what our brand represents; and we believe our product offers consumers low calories without compromising on taste," Ripley said. "From a consumer perspective, it boils down to brand, packaging and taste."
The company believes that the packaging can provide an entry into new venues that do not allow glass because of the potential for breakage, opening up new sales opportunities. "The great thing about PET is that it travels well for summer weekends," Ripley said.
Another key feature is a unique barrier coating technology developed by Germany's KHS Plasmax GmbH, which provides extended shelf life. The 330ml PET bottle features KHS Plasmax's Silicon Oxide (SiOx) barrier coating that seals the container from the inside to protect the contents from oxidation and carbonation retention. Plasmax is an FDA and Canadian compliant passive barrier technology providing extended shelf life. This ultrathin (less than 100nm) material is transparent and resistant to cracking, abrasion, and delamination. Moreover, it doesn't degrade over time or have an activation time constraint nor limit the storage time for empty bottles. The barrier coating is easily removed during the recycling process without any contamination to the recycling system.
Amcor's "cradle to grave" development process played a key role in a speedy product introduction. From design concept development, to unit mold sampling and third party filling assistance, Amcor was able to help with a successful product launch. "Our new product launch was highly successful because Amcor brought us a full range of design concepts and followed the project from development to execution with a high attention to detail," Ripley said. "Their technical expertise and market knowledge helped to quickly take the design from concept to store shelf." Todd Mastic, principal engineer and project manager for Amcor, said that "since Amcor is a market leader in this segment, we were able to bring industry knowledge and significant resources to bear on this project, thus keeping the development and commercialization costs and timing to a minimum."
Amcor has worked with several brands in the RTD wine and spirits industry and assists companies who are seeking alternative packaging for shelf differentiation, product growth and new brand introductions. "As the consumer market becomes increasingly drawn to PET's convenience and portability, we expect continued growth for barrier PET containers in a range of package sizes for wine and other spirits drinks," said Kerry Drewry, sales manager for spirits, wine and beer for Amcor Rigid Plastics.