In the last few years, PET (polyethylene terephthalate) has been gaining ground over glass as the preferred material for wine bottles. A certain varietal wine supplier recently made the switch to PET for its single-serve, 187-ml wine products. As reported by Anne Marie Mohan on packworld.com, this company undertook the packaging change to better penetrate the retail and airline markets.
While glass bottles continue to be the preferred packaging material for wine, the use of PET bottles has steadily risen across the United States, Europe, and other parts of the globe. To accommodate the new wine bottle size and material, the wine supplier invested in a filling equipment designed specifically for this use. Indeed, as wine manufacturers explore other packaging options for their products, the need for flexible liquid fillers that can work with a wide range of beverages has become a necessity.
Wine packaged in PET bottles may be sold in places where glass bottles are not allowed, such as parks and other outdoor venues; their lighter weight and easier grip also make PET bottles more ideal to be served in airlines. PET bottles also appeal to many consumers because they are more convenient to carry around. Additionally, PET is a highly recyclable material which has the approval of environmentally-conscious customers.
For wine bottlers, the use of lighter PET containers means having to choose liquid filling equipment that can accommodate these thinner and lighter materials. It might even be wise for bottlers to look further ahead and consider machine specifications that will work should wine bottles get even lighter and thinner. Likewise, wine companies may also need filling equipment suitable for new, non-traditional serving sizes that can come in the heels of popularity of single-serve beverage products.
Wine producers thus need to rely on experienced filling equipment manufacturers, such as Filling Equipment Co., Inc., to provide them with liquid filler machines that can accommodate any change in packaging processes. These machines need to be flexible enough to function with various material thicknesses and sizes. Just as importantly, they have to meet any manufacturer’s target speed and accuracy without compromising the quality and sanitation of each product.
Experience and a good track record are two criteria wine bottlers should look for in a filling equipment supplier. In addition to being efficient and accurate, the ideal liquid fillers should also be easy to clean and maintain. Furthermore, in light of the ongoing developments in wine packaging, flexibility has also become an important consideration in choosing a liquid filler.