Packaging

Ship-shape cans to the rescue

October 1, 2008
/ Print / Reprints /
ShareMore
/ Text Size+
While American food companies have progressed from flirtation to serious courtship of plastic containers, manufacturers in Europe, South America and Asia are tapping an expanding lineup of can shaping technology to revive flagging sales in some categories and kick-start consumer interest in others, according to Carolyn Takata, marketing director for Woodland Hills, CA-based Silgan Containers Corp.

Technological developments are expanding the possible shapes for metal and aluminum containers while keeping costs in line. Source: Silgan Containers Corp




“Marketing communication has moved from advertising to the shelf,” says Takata, citing research suggesting two-thirds of buying decisions are made at the point of purchase. With three seconds or less to make an impression, an eye-catching shape can draw as much attention as a colorful label.

Embossing, draw redraw shaping and body shaping are some of the technologies used to provide clutter-busting can shapes at costs that don’t represent a prohibitive premium. Impact extrusion containers made from aluminum can be produced at speed up to 200 containers per minute on a single line, for example.

Leading edge processes that yield exotic shapes don’t approach those speeds, of course. Hydro forming, in which fluid and axial compression applies pressure to a cylinder inside a shaped mold, only yields a container every 12 seconds. Pressure ram forming (PRF) is considerably faster, with up to 26 units a minute. PRF more closely resembles blow-molding than any traditional can-forming technique: temperature, pressure and ramming force are used to expand a preform up to 70 percent into symmetrical or asymmetrical shapes. PRF only can be used with aluminum.

Coca-Cola Japan realized more than a eight-fold sales increase over four years after introducing a bottle-shaped aluminum can. Two Japanese breweries followed suit. 

For more information:

Carolyn Takata,
Silgan Containers Corp.,
818-710-2420,
ctakata@silgancontainers.com

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.

Multimedia

Videos

Image Galleries

Plant of the Year 2014

Blue Diamond Growers was chosen as Food Engineering's 2014 Plant of the Year. The Sacramento-based company is the world’s largest producer of almonds and almond ingredients.

Podcasts

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

FSMA Audit

What is the is most important step you have taken to become ready for a FSMA audit?
View Results Poll Archive

Food Engineering

FE September 2014

2014 September

The September 2014 issue of Food Engineering explores how lean manufacturing, quality improvements and increased automation helps processors meet rapidly changing demands. Also, read how robotics, advanced machine controls, software and OEE are just a few of the tools that can boost productivity on packaging lines.

Table Of Contents Subscribe

THE FOOD ENGINEERING STORE

Food-Authentication-Flyer-(.gif
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 www.foodmaster.com to learn more.

STAY CONNECTED

FE recent tweets

facebook_40.pngtwitter_40px.pngyoutube_40px.png linkedin_40px.pngGoogle +