In Major Technical Feat, Cross-Functional Team Uses Unique Mix of Design and Engineering Techniques to Deliver One-of-a-Kind Hot Fill Container for Ready-to-Drink Tea Market
ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Crystal Geyser Water Co., Calistoga, Calif., has introduced its award-winning Tejava® Premium Iced Tea in eye-catching, elegant 18oz polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles from Amcor Rigid Plastics, the world’s leading producer of PET packaging. A cross-functional team from Crystal Geyser and Amcor, consisting of package designers, industrial designers, and engineering experts, achieved a major technical feat by applying Amcor’s vast industry experience along with advanced software programs to develop the first-of-its-kind hand-sculpted PET hot fill bottle. This innovative package design integrates a life size tea leaf motif with three-dimensional qualities into the bottle’s shape.
The PET container extends the Tejava® product offering beyond its 1L and 12oz glass packaging, allowing Crystal Geyser to penetrate the on-the-go consumer market while also expanding its national footprint. National retail distribution for the new bottles will begin in early June at more than 7,000 CVS Drug Stores.
Tejava® Premium Iced Tea is the world’s only 100% all natural, microbrewed ready-to-drink (RTD) iced black tea made entirely from handpicked tea leaves from the island of Java. Crystal Geyser’s vision was to create a one-of-kind PET bottle, incorporating the tea leaf motif into the design so that the final package would be distinct. “Our goal with this bottle was to provide consumers with an award-winning premium iced tea in an elegantly shaped PET bottle that distinguishes Tejava from the competition,” said Shawn Fitzpatrick, Director of Marketing for Crystal Geyser. “The bottle stands out on the shelf and its upscale image makes consumers want to stop and pick it up.” Crystal Geyser believes the new proprietary PET bottle, conceptualized by Rio Miura, will set a new packaging standard in the RTD tea category.
The unique bottle design delivers a container with strong shelf appeal, according to Mike Enayah, Amcor’s director of industrial design. “Ultimately, the bottle’s highly attractive and eye-catching shelf appeal motivates consumers to want to hold the container,” said Enayah. “This ‘organic element’ design had never been done before but Amcor was able to deploy the right tools, great talent, and the entire team to make it happen.”
Crystal Geyser’s initial design idea was so unique that it required Amcor to go beyond its traditional CAD capabilities. Indeed, Amcor utilized seven software systems which were adapted from the gaming, animation, movie, and automotive industries to accomplish the project in an unconventional manner. Different elements of each software program were combined and then put in the hands of Amcor industrial designer Greg Hurley who developed an “artistic” rendition of the tea leaf sculpture.
Amcor’s industrial design and engineering team worked together to refine the design and the key structural elements of the bottle. Through the collaboration between Amcor’s design, CAD, and FEA team, a set of geometry was developed, providing more than an engraving but a highly refined structural element inspired by nature, explained Ricardo Sandoval, Amcor senior industrial designer. Extensive detail went into the tea leaf design which provides an organic flow and a unique textural experience for the consumer. The concept of the bottle was to give the illusion of “holding a bundle of tea leaves.”
"The scope of the project was to develop a unique innovative design that would capture the soul of the brand,” said Christopher Howe, Amcor’s project engineer. “This container development required an exclusive set of skills and select talent to take the design from concept to store shelf and at every stage of the project there were new challenges that required a unique solution.”
While the focus was on maximizing the design, Amcor also ensured that the bottle met its performance requirements to create a highly functional, eye-catching bottle. Amcor’s Advanced Engineering team performed Finite Element Analysis (FEA) modelling to predict the container’s performance behavior and thus create a bottle that would be functional in the real world. Amcor employed its PowerFlex technology which features a patented panel-less design which takes hot fill (185 deg F) bottle options to a new level. Amcor’s structural design eliminates the panels, and unlike competitive containers, provides the freedom to create various designs along the walls.
Amcor uses design and manufacturing techniques to create a patented bottle that absorbs vacuum via a specially designed base. A unique diaphragm within the base draws upward as the liquid cools. It has the geometric characteristics to enable the inverted cone-shaped diaphragm to deflect upward as the vacuum is created.
Amcor used three software systems to adjust the design geometry, resulting in a highly functional structure that maintained its aesthetic qualities. In addition, to meet Crystal Geyser’s compressed time-to-market needs, Amcor made innovative use of rapid prototyping tooling to provide timely samples to the customer for test marketing, according to Terry Patcheak, Amcor’s senior technical manager.
“The Tejava bottle highlights Amcor's drive to push the boundaries of PET and typical package constraints by utilizing cutting edge technology with top talent to deliver commercially innovative packages to the market,” said Howe.
Crystal Geyser also realizes key sustainability benefits with single-serve PET bottles. They are lightweight, unbreakable, less wasteful, and recyclable. The plastic bottles also result in significantly reduced transportation costs and other supply chain efficiencies.
In addition, Crystal Geyser Water Co. uses PET bottles for its 18oz and 1.25L sparkling mineral water products.
About Crystal Geyser WaterCompany
An industry innovator, Crystal Geyser Water Company (CGWC) pioneered flavored sparkling mineral water, whose popularity continues to grow as more consumers seek natural alternatives to sugared or artificially sweetened soft drinks. In addition to sparkling mineral water and Tejava® premium iced tea, CGWC produces Juice Squeeze®, a refreshing line of lightly carbonated juice beverages that contain a full serving of fruit and are made with 70% real fruit juice and no added sugars or preservatives.
Crystal Geyser Water Company (CGWC), based in Calistoga, Calif., is a natural beverage company founded in Napa Valley. For more than 35 years, the company has been committed to creating premium quality, wholesome and delicious natural beverages. CGWC products can be found at grocery, natural foods, drug/mass merchant, club stores, and food service outlets throughout the western U.S. The company operates as a subsidiary of Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. For more information, visit www.crystalgeyser.com.
Amcor Rigid Plastics is among the world’s largest manufacturers of plastic packaging for the beverage, food, spirits, personal and home care, and pharmaceuticals industries with 66 facilities in 12 countries. Amcor Limited is a global leader in responsible packaging solutions, employing more than 35,000 people worldwide, operating in 43 countries across 300 sites. Amcor supplies a broad range of plastic (rigid and flexible), fibre, metal, and glass packaging solutions to enhance the products consumers use in everyday life. Amcor also provides packaging-related services that help customers succeed through collaboration and innovation driven by art and science. Amcor is headquartered in Melbourne, Australia, and is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange. For more information, visit www.amcor.com.
Amcor Rigid Plastics
Group 55 Marketing