Rectangular bottle targeted at hot fill beverages

By staff reporter

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Polyethylene terephthalate, Recyclable materials

A rectangular polyethylene terephthalate (PET) container for hot
fill beverages offers increased strength and packs at a greater
density, claims its manufacturer.

The "cubed" portion of the brand name "QuadMax3" reflects the "increased cube efficiency of 15 per cent per bulk pallet empty containers and by eight per cent for cases of filled containers per pallet,"​ Amcor stated in announcing the release of the new container.

QuadMax3 was released alongside QuadPlus, another line of hot fill bottle. The company says it has applied to patent the PET strengthening technology that is used to produce the two containers.

Hot filling is one of the methods beverage makers use to reduce the chances pathogens end up in their products. Aseptic filling, ensuring a high degree of sterilisation in the filling area is another method used as part of food safety procedures. The hot-filling process involves filling containers immediately after the product has been through a thermal processing step. The temperature of the liquid product is leveraged to also sanitize the package into which it is being filled.

Hot-filling may be done at temperatures between 182F and 192F, for example. Bottles have to be strong enough to absorb the distortion that occurs as the beverage cools to room temperature.

The QuadPlus offers a more rigid, stronger alternative for those filling 46-ounce to 48-ounce and 64-ounce, hot-filled rectangular PET bottles, the company stated in a press release. Amcor is targeting QuadPlus at companies that want to upgrade without investing money in adapting filling machines and who do not want to change their existing rectangular bottle footprint.

QuadMax 3 is offered as a more rigid alternative. The company is targeting this design at beverage companies currently filling round PET containers and who want to convert to rectangular PET. Another market is companies who are already using a rectangular bottle footprint but want to convert to a 64- or 46-/48-ounce rectangular one.

Both sizes have a 43mm finish. The QuadMax 3 's denser pack pattern also allows processors to pack more product into a space compared to round bottles.

Additionally, the stronger heat-set process used for both brands allows processors to cut down on the amount of plastic they use, the company claimed.

"Traditional PET bottle lightweighting can cause sidewall sag and, or denting, poor label application due to impaired sidewall performance, variable fill weights and give consumers a 'cheaper' feel,"​ Amcor stated.

The Quad Plus has variable body cross-sections to add radial stiffness, giving a more consistent weight and a dent-resistant body under hot-fill conditions, the company claimed.

The handling areas and body ribs have been designed to flex under load rather than buckle, reducing the chance that product will arrive at the retail level dented.

The Quad Plus is also available in 46-/48-ounces, but with a different footprint.

A major trend in the beverage packaging sector is the replacement of glass bottles by PET containers, according to AMI research in a report released last year.

Another report last year, from Freedonia, forecast above-average growth in plastic containers made for the food sector based on the improved heat resistance of resins such as polyethylene terephthalate (PET).

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