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Perrier debuts gulpable water

The Perrier Group of America introduces its first ever PET water bottle with a 43-mm, wide-mouth opening.

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The 32-oz bottle is molded by Schmalbach-Lubeca, Plastic Containers USA and wrapped with a synthetic label from Hammer Lithograph. The new look that debuted May 1 addresses a consumer trend toward single-serve "gulpable" drinks.

The Perrier Group of America, Greenwich, CT, introduces its first ever polyethylene terephthalate water bottle with a 43-mm, wide-mouth opening, supplied by Schmalbach-Lubeca, Plastic Containers USA (Manchester, MI).

On May 1, the 32-oz bottles were shipped to convenience stores nationwide, priced from $1.29 to $1.49. The bottles are labeled under Perrier's U.S. natural spring water brands: Poland Spring, Zephyrhills, Ozarka, Deer Park and Arrowhead. According to Perrier, the new look addresses a consumer trend toward single-serve "gulpable" drinks and is targeted to active adults, mostly males aged 16 to 25, who are core convenience store shoppers. The company also sampled to consumers at outdoor events in selected markets throughout the summer.

In addition to featuring a wider-mouth finish with a twist-off cap, the container features a “dimpled,” sporty thread-like pattern and grippable ribbed sides, designed with Cornerstone Strategic Branding (New York City). Weighing approximately 36 grams, the PET bottles are two-stage injection stretch blow-molded in three Schmalbach-Lubeca plants: Fairfield, CA; Allentown, PA; and Blythewood, SC.

Bigger, bolder, colder

Sold in the cold-box section of convenience stores, Perrier moved from paper to synthetic labels with this package for both functional and consumer-related reasons. According to Perrier, the moisture-resistance of the synthetic material is stronger than paper when bottles are chilled or on ice.

"Given the uniqueness, sportiness and size of the bottle, we wanted to attract the attention of the target customer and differentiate [the brand] with other beverages within the cold box," Perrier tells "Aesthetically, using a synthetic label creates a much brighter, bigger and bolder appearance."

Hammer Lithograph Corp. (Rochester, NY) supplied the cut-and-stack labels for the new product launch. Using Hammer's SYN™ biaxially-oriented polypropylene synthetic paper, the 3-mil labels are applied with a traditional Krones (Franklin, WI) labeler. The graphics are in six UV colors, sheet-fed offset printed on an eight-color Mitsubishi (Lincolnshire, IL) press, specially configured for synthetic material.

Perrier acknowledges an incremental cost difference in using a synthetic label for the wide-mouth water bottles, but declines to provide the specific difference.

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