CCL Container has created a striking bottle design for the Elements energy drink range from Cadbury Schweppes' Snapple unit. The recyclable aluminium bottle offers a resealable lug cap, frosted finish and extreme graphics which the companies claim will appeal to the product's target audience: 16-24 year old males.
Last year the two companies collaborated on a resealable aluminium beverage bottle for Snapple's Mistic RE energy drink, the world's first mainstream beverage product to be packaged in impact-extruded aluminium. The packaging proved a success, winning a number of industry awards, including a 2002 WorldStar Packaging Award.
Snapple's Elements line, originally presented in curvy, 20-ounce glass bottles with tapered necks, was launhced in April 1999. Three of the line's flavours - Fire (dragonfruit), Rain (agave cactus) and Meteor (tangelo) - will now be repackaged in CCL Container's resealable aluminum bottles. A new flavour, called Sub-Zero (Siberian Cherry), has also been added to the line.
"We want to offer options to the Elements consumer," said Snapple's director of packaging, Susan Chirico. "The durability, resealability and 'chillability' of aluminum bottles make them ideal for active people who want to just grab their beverage and go," she continued.
Elements is sold via convenience stores and selected grocers in the US. According to the company's vice president of marketing, Maura Mottolese, the brand currently accounts for a significant portion of Snapple's company volumes. "The Elements consumer is young, experimental and trend setting," she said. "To grow this market, we need to keep refreshing the brand and packaging is a big part of that."
Chirico echoed that viewpoint. "Our packaging serves several important objectives beyond just holding the product," she explained. "Our packaging is a major component of our communications strategy and a powerful tool in defining our brand."
CCL's aluminium packaging immediately is lightweight and unbreakable, making the container highly portable. Rugged grip rings make it easy to drink on the run, the company said.
Extensive testing prior to the relaunch showed that consumer response to the new design was high. "Consumer interest to purchase was extremely high; in fact, consumers wanted to keep the bottle after the testing was over. With Mistic RE, we were the first beverage company in the country to commercialise the concept of the resealable aluminium bottle. With Elements, we've taken that concept even further," said Chirico.
CCL achieved the container's striking graphic by applying a silver metallic base coat with a gloss over-varnish, then adding an ice crystal design with a proprietary white ink during the printing process. The 'icy' look reflects the container's advanced performance. The aluminium bottle keeps beverages cold, an attractive feature for those more likely to reach into a backpack for a drink than into a refrigerator, Chirico said.
The container's graphics and lettering are bright and bold, and rendered in an animated style that conveys youth and fun. The graphics presented a bit of a challenge during production because the grip rings on the neck distorted the lettering. CCL compensated for this by elongating the lettering during the printing process. Several test runs were required to determine how the lettering should be altered.
Elements in aluminium was launched in the western United States in early February and will be available throughout the country by the end of the spring.