With an onslaught of new beverages on the market, we’re constantly seeing new packaging that pushes the envelope of "realistic" drinking options. We’ve come a long way since the glass bottles of Coca-Cola, but we've also stopped close to the edge of "space food." We’re not sure we can get on board with sucking our drinks out of small pouches, but research and numerous beverage news sources like BeverageDaily and BevNet tell us that the pouch may the way of the future. Alcoholic beverages were the first to catch on to the wave of Capri Sun-style pouches that allow for single-serving drinks to be offered at a lower price point. Pouches are less costly than bottles for smaller companies to produce, and they tend to be marketed for consumers who are on the go.
While many companies bottle their products solely because of the marketing value of being able to "re-seal" a drink, pouches offer a slightly different angle — they’re only worth one serving. Once you’re done, you toss the pouch away.
Companies like Technical Help in Engineering and Marketing (T.H.E.M.), a leading North American provider of single-serve flexible packaging solutions, have caught onto the profitability of the trend. From Sept. 23 to 25 T.H.E.M. will be showcasing its new machine, the Sanko FR-3 Pouch Filler, at Pack Expo 2013 in Las Vegas. This new product is capable of filling more than 300 pouches-per-minute, the fastest in its category worldwide. Not only will this increase productivity for companies, but it might move the pouch trend into other sectors of consumer products. "This is a very exciting development for us," said Neil Kozarsky, CEO and president of T.H.E.M in a recent press release "The FR-3 offers significant speed and efficiency benefits to our core food and beverage customers. We also see significant potential in the personal care and cosmetics markets, two important segments that we are also addressing." So it may not be just our drinks that start looking like space food.