A packaging fault that has triggered the recall of millions of bottles of a fruit drink targeted at children is set to cost manufacturers Britvic up to £5m (€6.2m), said the company.
The drinks giant was yesterday forced to issue a statement to investors outlining the potential dent to its profits in the wake of its decision to recall all Robinson Fruit Shoot and Fruit Shoot Hydro packs in Great Britain because of safety concerns about the bottle closure.
The firm said that testing of the novel cap had “identified an issue with a small number of damaged caps which may become fully or partially detached”.
In its prelaunch marketing campaign Britvic said the closure was a “spill-proof Magicap”.
Company spokeswoman Susan Turner told FoodProductionDaily.com that production of the flavoured mineral water aimed at children aged seven to 11 had been suspended until the cause of the problem had been identified and solved.
Millions of units, millions of pounds
Britvic financial chiefs said they were already scrutinising the fallout from the incident.
“The potential financial impact of the recall is being analysed, but at this very early stage it is anticipated that there will be a limited cost estimated at between £1m and £5m to profit before tax in the current financial year,” said the firm in a statement to the City of London.
Turner said the problem had come to light just weeks after the drink with the novel sports cap had been launched – which meant that millions of units were affected by the recall.
“It appears to be only a small number of the caps that are likely to be affected but as there is a safety risk we need them all off the market,” she said.
A full investigation was underway to identify whether the problem was a full-blown design fault or a limited manufacturing error.
Turner added: “We won’t be able to comment definitively until we’ve finished the investigation but it does appear to be happening during the manufacturing process. We are working with a number of our suppliers and the cap designer to identify the issue and come up with a solution.”
Britvic said the recall did not affect Fruit Shoot in the US, Australia or Republic of Ireland and that Fruit Shoot My-5 was not being recalled. No other Robinsons products are affected.