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'Flex' handle gives High Falls packs a lift

High Falls Brewing Co., Rochester, NY, has improved the carrying handle for its multipacks of glass-bottled beer brands such as Genesee and J.W.
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Dundee’s Original Honey Brown Lager. Debuting in June the 12-packs represent the first commercial use of the patent-pending DuraLift™ handle from MeadWestvaco (Atlanta GA).

“We like the new DuraLift handle because you can immediately see and feel both its strength and flexibility” explains Shawn O’Donnell High Falls’ brand manager. “The DuraLift handle is wider and feels hardier than conventional handles when you lift or carry bottle packs. It cushions your fingers with rounded edges and ‘gives’ extra space around your fist as you lift the pack. Even larger hands have plenty of room for comfort. From the initial market response consumers like it as much as we do.”

The cartons are manufactured of 21-pt Coated Natural Kraft™ flexo-printed in six colors and coated with nonscuff and nonskid varnishes. A die-cut portion of CNK is folded over and glued beneath the handle area. This added portion attaches to both end panels to distribute the product weight to the ends to improve the pack strength. It is designed such that when the three-ply handle is lifted it flexes up. The 9½” x 9” x 7’’ carton also includes an easy-open feature via perforations on the top panel that extend down the front.

O’Donnell says “in states like New York these cartons can be reused to carry bottles back to the store for redemption. This shows how we support responsible value-added packaging.”

High Falls packs bottles into cartons using a leased Mead DuoDozen multipacker. Coinciding with the carton change the company also converted to stock amber longneck bottles molded by Anchor Glass (Tampa FL). Standardizing on one bottle type improves the company’s overall efficiencies. High Falls’ brands are sold in 43 states. —RL

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