Andrew Streeter, director of CPS International and packaging innovations director at Datamonitor International will expand upon his topic in an exclusive presentation for BeverageDaily.com's free-to-access online event tomorrow.
He will tell his audience - you can register to watch the webinar for free here - that you can't separate the beverage process from the pack – especially since what the consumer sees as 'design cues' on pack are often linked to the process technology (as per bottles used for High Pressure Processing or HPP juice), and expands on what he sees as a 'battle royale' between liquid cartons and bottles.
“As packaged brands – putting the process to one side – put them on a shelf next to each other, there are upsides and downsides to both," Streeter says.
“At this point I’m not going to declare and see which one is better – I’ll leave it to you perhaps to look at these examples and say ‘which one says freshness more?’ ‘which one has the branding cues?’ ‘which one is more consumer driven, perhaps more contemporaneous.”
Packaged brands have a role in life...differentiation!
Liquid cartons have a long heritage of looking similar, Streeter says, comparing UHT with aseptic facings for brands in grocery stores.
“The point I want to make is that packaged brands need to be highly differentiated – that’s their role in life, perhaps one of advantages they have at the moment. And it’s not just in juice – I’m using that as a bit of a vehicle...but also for dairy, white milk, for example," he adds.
Streeter says he believes bottles can more easily secure ‘brand differentiation’, but warns that the brand values that stem from high tech processes such as aseptic and HPP are "not really visible".
"Looking at ambient packaging versus chilled packaging, with bottles and cartons in both cases. The value of aseptic is covert, not there at all. Values are in large part being driven by the retailer – by retail shelf temperature," he says.
'Still some lessons to be learnt!'
"By having it chilled, there is a cachet in these brands associated with chilled and there’s a price difference as well – but there’s a tremendous value in both scenarios that isn’t being capitalized upon because we’re not pushing the benefits of the product manufacturing process," Streeter adds.
Giving the example of the Coldpress HPP juice brand, which is sold in Tesco in the UK in a six-sided bottle to assist the HPP processing, Streeter says: "There's a story about what’s going on, some nice iconography that helps – but does the communication really go far enough?"
“I still think we’re using product packaging covertly in a new product process area that is very exciting indeed, and in that there some lessons to be learned," he adds.
*Join us tomorrow (March 20 2014) for our free online event, Beverage & Dairy Treatment 2014. The program starts at 10.15am New York time, 3.15pm in Paris, and explores process technologies including aseptic, ESL and HPP.
Exclusive webinars unite top consultants, suppliers such as GEA Procomac and Avure and brandowners including Coca-Cola Hellenic and Refresco Gerber. Click here to find out more and to register .