The wine market is on the move – regarding consumption figures, the range on offer and the taste preferences of wine-drinkers as well as in terms of what constitutes suitable packaging for wine. Even just a few years ago, for quality wines there were no serious packaging alternatives to the traditional glass bottle, but the market has come a long way. Pouches, PET bottles, bag-in-box, carton packs, very small volumes of wine in food metal cans – the range of possibilities is increasing, and the various options are also becoming more widely accepted by wine-makers and consumers.  

While the glass bottle continues to dominate the market, there is competition – first and foremost, from carton packs. SIG Combibloc (www.sig.ch) released several varieties of carton packs for wine, including smaller, single-serve cartons. Carton packs are clearly apart from packaging alternatives. Compared to other packaging solutions, in addition to its product protection characteristics and its obvious advantages in terms of weight and therefore transport, with four fully printable display surfaces the carton pack is also a versatile information carrier offering multiple options for design and layout. These key environmental benefits make eco-friendly carton packs the perfect companion to organically grown wines. Eye-catching, unusual package designs are an effective way of picking up on some of the aspects that make carton packs so unique. Added to the obvious environmental benefit is the fact that carton packs are unbreakable, making them the perfect companion, for instance, at public events at which glass bottles are banned for safety reasons.  

A range of different fill volumes, with the same base area, can be packaged using a single SIG Combibloc filling machine.­­­­­­­­­­­­­  

In the future, the composition of the packaging mix is likely to be shaped by a growing environmental awareness among consumers, predicts Norman Gierow, Global Market Segment Manager NCSD (non-carbonated soft drinks) at SIG Combibloc, one of the world’s leading system suppliers of carton packaging and filling machines for beverages and food. Says Gierow: “For food manufacturers today, one of the key concerns, and at the same time one of the best selling points, is to assure consumers that products are grown and processed in a responsible and environmentally sound manner. We're seeing a clear tendency, on the part of manufacturers and consumers, not just for this requirement to apply to the origin of the ingredients, but for the packaging to be incorporated into the overall product concept as well. In this respect, premium foods go together perfectly with carton packaging, because carton packs are manufactured up to around 75% from wood pulp, a renewable resource. We use only wood fibers from well-managed forests and other controlled sources to manufacture our carton packs. To make sure this happens, SIG Combibloc is the first manufacturer of beverage cartons to have all its global operations certified in accordance with the rigorous, internationally binding criteria of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) for a full chain-of-custody verification”.