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Bottled water gets hip

A unique, flask-shaped container made of polyethylene terephthalate for Vijay mineral water is attracting the attention of consumers in Australia, where the package debuted in January.

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According to Japan-based Vijay, the container's curvy shape is designed to fit conveniently against the body thanks to the addition of a belt clip, injection-molded of polypropylene or ABS. The pack is targeted at joggers, cyclists and other active types who want to keep the bottle close by without having to hold it. The clips are currently attached to the bottles by hand, though that may change as volumes increase.

Vijay's Yuko Hashimoto tells Packaging World, "The flask shape is unique and difficult to mold, because it is neither round nor square. We have to have a special machine to make the right thickness at the right place." While Vijay wouldn't divulge its container supplier, Hashimoto does say that the bottles are manufactured on an Aoki (Elk Grove Village, IL) single-stage injection/stretch blow-molding machine.

The 330-mL (11.2-oz) bottle sells for AU$1 (US 64¢), about 10% higher than conventionally packaged waters, due to its higher production costs, according to Vijay. The package originally debuted in Japan a little more than a year ago. Next up: Vijay plans to bring the bottle to the U.S. and Europe.

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