Tucked away amid the comprehensive display of containers on the Artenius PET Packaging Europe exhibit at Drinktec 2009 was its new design for a PET wine bottle that can accept synthetic or traditional corks.
Now in the final stages of development, the new Project Santiago multilayer bottle uses APPE's proprietary BindOx active barrier technology and weighs less than 2 ounces, compared with 21 ounces or more for a traditional glass design.
APPE already has a number of screw-closure wine applications in the market.
The new cork-closure design weighs the same as the screw version but features a redesigned neck and shoulder to withstand the top-load during the corking process.
According to Michel Goovaerts, APPE's specialty beverages director for Europe, having a bottle that can accept a cork closure is important, as it is the preferred option for more than 80 percent of a global wine market that consumes 22 billion to 26 billion liters a year.
The design, in the final stages of testing, is likely to be introduced to the U.S. in February.
The U.S. is a prime market for converting from glass to PET, said Goovaerts, because of the weight savings. The U.K. is also looking hard at PET for its potential to reduce carbon dioxide, with interest driven by the major retailers.
Selling the concept of PET to the continental European wine industry is a more challenging task due to the structure of the industry, which comprises many small players, he added.
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