- THE MAGAZINE
- CATEGORY FOCUS
- BEVERAGE R&D
From cans to bottles to aseptic containers, beverage packaging is attracting attention for more than how it looks these days. Consumers, the media, Wal-Mart, other retailers and grocery chains, state legislators and whole countries are examining what a product is packaged in. Regardless if the issue is health, safety, the environment or aesthetics, packaging material is becoming an even greater consideration.
Beverage industry veteran Joe Roberts spent a number of years making a name for himself in the beverage business, so when he decided to launch Cintron Beverage Group two years ago, he had a wealth of industry knowledge and knew a few tricks of the trade. It didn’t hurt that he partnered with a successful Philadelphia-area commercial construction executive who also had a few tools at the ready, including an association with Offshore Super Series powerboat racing, which helped Cintron make a big impact in a short period of time.
The trends in packaging design are moving toward a more sustainable future. The green movement has caught on, and many designers are creating packages that are recyclable and more eco-friendly. Packages using smaller amounts of material are showing up in the marketplace, and recyclability is part of the overall design process. Five designers recently discussed packaging material trends with Beverage Industry and why eco-friendly packages are here to stay.
Whether for environmental, health, safety or other reasons, increased consumer purchases are driving natural and organic beverage growth. Mintel International, Chicago, forecasts total U.S. sales of organic beverages to increase at an inflation-adjusted annual rate of 7.8 percent through 2012.
While the iconic Golden Arches signal convenience to many consumers, McDonald’s USA proved two years ago that it could be more than quick and value-priced with the introduction of its Premium Roast Coffee and other premium food offerings. Now that the coffee has kicked in, the Oak Brook, Ill.-based restaurant chain is using its beverage portfolio to make it more contemporary and relevant â€” and plans on giving other beverage-focused retailers a run for their money.
The predicated British invasion of 2007 â€” or the opening of Tesco stores on the West Coast last fall â€” proved less traumatic for traditional retailers than feared, with many industry observers saying the financial impact has so far been minimal. But the U.K. retailer’s psychological influence has been felt far beyond its initial markets and caused supermarket retailers to re-evaluate their store formats and product offerings.
Steve Haley, chief executive officer of Delray Beach, Fla.-based Celsius, is no stranger to understanding consumers’ desire for beverages. For 20 years, Haley helped distributors and manufacturers predict where their industries were going. So it’s only natural that Haley would put his own company on the leading edge of a new beverage trend.
The beer industry has reason to say “cheers” this year, as sales are on their way up again after several years of struggle. Beer consumption in the United States grew 1.4 percent in 2007, according to the Beer Institute in Washington, D.C. Domestic volumes improved a total of 1.5 percent for the year, with the domestic craft segment up 12 percent. Import volumes increased 1.4 percent.
Are you an Insider? Subscribe to Beverage Industry’s weekly e-newsletter to receive news headlines, new product information and magazine highlights.
This book addresses the principles of cleaning operations, water supply issues and the science of detergents and disinfectants.