UK packaging company GreenBottle has signed a deal with a major wine supplier to produce the world’s first paper wine ‘bottle’ for supermarket sale this year, and claims there is wider global interest within the beverage industry.
The contract was signed at the recent London International Wine Festival, and will involve independent wine supplier Kingsland Wines and Spirits (2010 turnover circa. £150m) filling GreenBottles (comprising a paper outer layer and a thin plastic lining) with various wines.
The firm has been in talks with supermarkets and wine producers since 2011, but yesterday a GreenBottle spokesman confirmed to BeverageDaily.com: “The wine bottle should be on [supermarket] shelves by the end of the year.”
'Revolutionary' pulp-moulding technology
GreenBottle said its bottle (pictured below) weighed around 60g compared with 400g+ for a glass equivalent, and offered a lower carbon footprint and reduced transportation costs; Kingsland itself made the news in 2010 for developing the world’s lightest screw-top glass wine bottle at just 300g.
Inventor and company founder Martin Myerscough (pictured right) said: “Kingsland are an ideal partner as, not only are they the UK’s premier wine supplier, they are committed to sustainability too.
"We’re really looking forward to seeing wine in GreenBottles both in the UK and in other countries over the next few months, so watch this space.”
Myerscough’s firm has developed a “revolutionary pulp-moulding technology“ that it says is innovative, proprietary and better for the environment than existing packaging.
Flexible moulding technology allowed for impressive shelf stand out, while paper bottles allowed the option of printing, not currently possible on glass bottles, GreenBottle said.
“It is already attracting worldwide interest in the drinks and detergents industries and GreenBottle expects to begin moving into these categories, including potential sales in overseas markets later this year,“ the firm added.
The packaging will be produced at GreenBottle’s new manufacturing plant at St. Helens (near Liverpool), and will service Kingsland, which is based nearby in Irlam, Manchester.
The paper wine bottle was more convenient for consumers to use and dispose off (cutting out trips to glass recycling centres), since it could be ripped up and recycled with newspapers, or even composted, GreenBottle claimed.
Better insulation than glass?
GreenBottles also offered better insulation than glass, the firm said, meaning that they would stay cooler for longer when sitting on the table, and were thus well suited to summer picnics and barbecues.
GreenBottle previously invented the world’s first paper milk bottle, which it claims has price parity with plastic options; this has been sold in Asda stores across Southwest England since last year.
The bottle tripled milk sales (compared with standard bottles) during a six-month trial, according to GreenBottle, with an 80% consumer preference rate over plastic bottles and sound awareness of sustainablity benefits.
The company cited Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP) statistics showing that the UK buys around 1.2bn glass bottle per year (generating associated CO2 emissions during transportation), which contribute 500,000 tonnes of waste to the UK stream.