Tetra Pak’s first ever wine carton, produced in the UK, in a new 75cl size should appeal to fine wine producers there. The packaging giant has partnered producer Greencroft Bottling Company (part of the Northern Ireland-based Lanchester Wine Group) and will be using the convenient, credible alternative to glass bottles, namely its Tetra Prisma Aseptic carton.
Until now, cartons in 25cl and 100cl formats had been imported into the UK. ‘To achieve a critical mass for consumer trial and acceptance, it’s important to use a 75cl domestically produced carton solution, which is now available,’ says Ian Williamson, retail manager of Tetra Pak UK. In other markets such as Italy and Spain wine in cartons is readily accepted.
‘The partnership between Greencroft Bottling and Tetra Pak means that, for the first time, the machinery is in place to enable wine to packed in cartons in the UK, therefore allowing wine producers, wine brands and retailers to capitalise on the significant commercial and logistical benefits of using cartons to package wine,’ comments Williamson.
For retailers and wine brands, Tetra Pak cartons ‘offer lower materials costs and a final product that is extremely space-efficient, meaning more products can be merchandised on-shelf, maximising return per square foot of selling space. Cartons also bring clear on-shelf brand and tier-differentiation and, while branding on bottles is usually limited to two labels, Tetra Pak cartons offer a 100 per cent printing surface area, providing multiple branding opportunities,’ he adds.
For consumers, cartons provide a convenient, safe and environmentally-friendly alternative to glass bottles, since they are recyclable, lightweight, shatter-proof, easy to grip, store, pour and re-seal; cartons also stopped oxygen and UV light contamination. Tetra Pak also claims its cartons are lightweight and space efficient, stating that one million litres of wine packed in Tetra Prisma Aseptic 750ml cartons could save up to 436 tonnes of packaging versus standard glass bottles, with consequent savings in fuel and haulage space.
‘Cartons are a credible alternative to glass bottles for wines at all price points,’ maintains Williamson. ‘They don’t adversely affect the quality or taste of the wine and provide better protection than glass bottles which cannot completely protect against the penetration of UV light, which causes degradation of the otherwise stable organic compounds found in wine, especially the tannins. As for quality wines, there is no reason why these too cannot be packed in cartons. A launch of a Chateauneuf-du-Pape in Sweden and other quality wines were readily accepted by Nordic consumers.’