Claire Phoenix is FoodBev Media managing editor – magazines. This is a personal blog and views expressed are her own.
At the Tetra Pak event in Modena, Italy, Fabio Thomazelli the product manager responsible for opening closures explained how Tetra Pak has the biggest caps and closures portfolio in the industry – 1,450 in all.
“There are pre applied and post applied closures. One is applied to the paperboard before the product is filled -with a pre laminated hole ready to take the neck. The neck is then formed in the machine using Direct Injection Moulding and once it has been filled with product, the overcaps are applied. For instance The Light Cap on TBA 1000 pack has a slanted gable top which enables larger caps to be used for drinking on the go and can be stackable as it lowers the overall height of the package.
Post applied caps use an over the edge PLH eg post laminated hole. The Dream Cap is one example. These have a bio based option ie – the polymer is derived from renewable sources – in most cases sugar cane is the origin. And The future of the caps market according to Thomazelli ?” We will have both pre applied and post applied caps – either adding value with more features for those who can afford it – or reducing costs”.
Professor Lena Lorentzen has conducted research on opening packaging – with many old people and children forced to ask others to open packs for them.
In fact 25% of the global population are said to suffer from insufficient grip and over 172 million people worldwide suffer from arthritis and rheumatism.
We tend to see reduced hand force in women, children and ageing consumers. When measured In Newtons, on average, children have a hand force of 104, while women register on average 270 and Men 450. So women have 40 per cent less hand force than men. This has led to Tetra Pak looking closely at how people unscrew caps – whether they use a twist grip or a tweezer grip and amending their carton closure designs to make life easier – such as via the cap knurl to improve grip – making unscrewing caps and opening cartons simpler, yet without losing container integrity.
At the press event everyone tested their grip using a digital measuring device.
I was pleased to find my grip registered 300 (must be the gardening) while a young female journalist from Singapore had a grip of just 20. These physiological differences between geographic populations are likely to make the need for kinder closures a wider imperative as the global population ages.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2021
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