US winemaker launches paper wine bottle

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 20th November 2013

US-based wine company Truett-Hurst Inc. has launched a paper wine bottle, branded PaperBoy, which is a moulded outer shell in the shape of a wine bottle, made from recycled cardboard and a plastic liner.

Truett-Hurst Inc. said the entire package is 85 per cent lighter than a glass bottle and is “easily recyclable”.

The PaperBoy bottles will contain appellation-based, super-premium wines sources from the Mendocino and Paso Robles growing regions, and crafted by winemaker Virginia Marie Lambrix, who is also the winemaker for VML.

“We at Truett-Hurst Inc. believe that if the quality of the wine exceeds a customer’s expectation, then new cutting-edge packaging will become more mainstream,” Ms Lambrix said.

Truett-Hurst Inc said it is responding to the lifestyle choices of “eco-conscious wine lovers on the go”. PaperBoy is lightweight — only 1.9 pounds filled — and can be collapsed when the wine is finished, for return to a recycling site.

“We’re thrilled to be a pioneer of this earth-friendly, high-quality, innovative package,” said Phil Hurst, Truett-Hurst Inc.’s President and CEO.

About the design

PaperBoy is in part the brain-child of Truett-Hurst Inc. designer, Kevin Shaw of alcoholic beverage bottle design company Stranger and Stranger. Shaw worked with the Truett-Hurst Inc. team and Green Bottle, a UK-based paper bottle manufacturer, to develop the PaperBoy package.

Truett-Hurst Inc. said extensive testing has shown that the PaperBoy bottle is “superior to a traditional glass bottle”. According to the Company, the paper bottle “insulates better, recycles more readily, and is lighter and more transportable, yet it looks and acts like a traditional glass bottle”.

“This is a product that is unashamedly different, and it was important that the name was iconic to own the medium, and that the branding was bright, strong, fearless,” Mr Shaw said.

Environmental impact

Truett-Hurst Inc. said packaging waste is a “huge and growing problem in modern society”, particularly in the wine industry. According, 17.5 billion bottles of wine are consumed annually around the globe, producing 8.75 billion tons of glass waste–more packaging waste than any other product in the food or drink sector.

The Company said its PaperBoy product “offers a better alternative”. The bottle’s cardboard outer can go into mainstream recycling streams, which are used to produce other cardboard products. The cap and neck assembly pieces are also recyclable, and the plastic liner is suitable for “waste to energy” programs.

According to Truett-Hurst Inc., the overall carbon footprint of PaperBoy, from production to shipping to recycling, is significantly lower than glass. The Company said that the 12-pack cartons are also produced from recycled paper.

Each PaperBoy bottle comes with instructions for how to break the bottle down for disposal. As a winemaker, Virginia Lambrix admires the economic practicality of PaperBoy. She says,

“Wines that will be consumed almost immediately do not need a heavy, environmentally and economically expensive glass bottle and cork,” said winemaker Virgina Lambrix. “We would rather apply the savings that PaperBoy affords toward more expensive, better-crafted wine so that both the customer and the environment win,” she said.

Transportation savings

Truett-Hurst Inc. said case weight for normal glass bottles with liquid is 36 pounds versus the paper bottle at 23.6 pounds. The Company said a pallet of 56 cases prepared for shipping is reduced from 2,000 pounds. to 1,322 pounds. — a weight reduction of 34 per cent and a savings of more than 7 tons per truckload of wine shipped.

PaperBoy paper wine bottles