The Coca-Cola Company is testing a fountain technology that can dispense more than 100 branded sparkling and still beverages from a single free-standing unit.
The dispenser has been designed to pour a wide variety of brands in about the same space as today’s eight valve dispenser. The unit can be used for high-concentrate ingredients and micro dispensing, and introducing a new brand on this dispenser is about as easy as changing a print cartridge, the company claims.
Coca-Cola North America FoodService and On-Premise President Chris Lowe, said: “We wanted a dispenser that offers consumers greater beverage variety while helping our customers increase beverage profitability. We started by ignoring preconceived notions of fountain beverages and explored how a fountain dispenser could look and work in the future.”
Consumer tests run earlier this summer revealed that the satisfaction with the overall beverage experience increased 72% vs the current fountain experience. The dispenser also got high marks for ease of use, variety/choice, taste, value and fun experience.
Second generation dispensers will begin testing in the first half of 2009, with a focus on performance, quality and reliability. A decision on commercialisation will follow completion of second generation tests.
The dispenser also offers environmental and logistic benefits as the very high concentrate ingredients will reduce packaging waste and energy use, as well as significantly reducing the storage space required to support fountain dispensers.
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