Don’t it turn my white can blue

September 10, 2012
/ Print / Reprints /
/ Text Size+

Credit Todd Berardi for finding a way to be different while bending to convention.
The founder of San Francisco-based Hiball Inc. jumped into the energy drink category eight years ago with Hiball energy drinks and energy waters filled in 10-oz. glass bottles. The energy drink category is approaching $8 billion at a 19.7 percent a year growth clip, according to figures from Symphony RI Group. While Hiball carved out a niche within the niche, category leaders Red Bull, Rockstar and Hansen Natural (maker of Monster energy drinks) became the dominant brand owners, with more than 84 percent of category sales. And while they try to distinguish themselves in how they deliver a boost, all their products are packaged in aluminum cans.
Going with the flow had a lot of advantages, Berardi concludes. Aluminum is more portable and appeals to “people who want to consume energy on the go and then crush it down and carry it when hiking,” he points out. Retailer complaints regarding merchandising a bottle in a sea of cans would be resolved. UV protection and an airtight seal meant shelf life would double. But being different also is important—that was the reason for glass in the first place—and rather than have another me-too can, Berardi decided to add a twist: temperature-sensitive ink that changes from clear to blue when the can’s temperature drops below 45°F.
Hiball was following in the shoes of Coors, which used a label impregnated with thermochromic dyes five years ago (see “Labels identify tall, cold ones,” Food Engineering, August 2007). Coors worked with a Chicago area supplier for the labels, but Chromatic Technologies Inc. holds an exclusive agreement on can applications, according to Melanie Edwards, manager-strategic sales initiatives. The Coors and Hiball dyes change from clear to blue, though Edwards says a palette of 13 colors can be used. For example, Mountain Dew cans tied to the Batman Rising film change from yellow to green when chilled.
For more information:
Melanie Edwards, Chromatic Technologies Inc., 719-592-1557

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to Food Engineering Magazine.

Recent Articles by Kevin Higgins, Senior Editor

You must login or register in order to post a comment.



Image Galleries

Fabulous Food Plant: Paramount Citrus

Learn more about this fabulous food plant in Food Engineering's article, found here.


Burns & McDonnell project manager RJ Hope and senior project engineer Justin Hamilton discuss the distinctions between Food Safety and Food Defense as well as the implications for food manufacturers of the Food Safety Modernization Act.
More Podcasts

What was your favorite part of FA&M 2014?

View Results Poll Archive


Food Engineering Magazine

Food engineering magazine 2014 april cover

2014 April

Catch a preview of the Powder and Bulk Show in this April 2014 edition of Food Engineering. Also, be sure to check out a coffee stick making a real stir and a major advancement in the the pet food industry.
Table Of Contents Subscribe


Food Authentication Using Bioorganic Molecules

This text provides critical tools and data needed to augment routine food analysis and enhance food safety by aiding in the detection of counterfeit, and potentially deleterious, foods.

More Products

Clear Seas Research

Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications,Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.

Food Master

Food Master Cover 2014Food Master 2014 is now available!


Where the buying process begins in the food and beverage manufacturing market. 

Visit to learn more.


FE recent tweets