‘Ho, ho, ho and a lighter bottle of rum!’ Ardagh R&D trims Sailor Jerry bottle weight 20%


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‘Ho, ho, ho and a lighter bottle of rum!’ Ardagh R&D trims Sailor Jerry bottle weight 20%

Related tags Bottle Glass Ardagh

Ardagh Group claims to have broken new technical ground by producing a cork-mouthed bottle for William Grant & Sons brand Sailor Jerry that uses a special process to help cut its weight by 20%.

After research work at its design and technical center, Ardagh said it had been able – for the first time – to produce a cork-mouthed bottle (pictured) using its weight saving ‘narrow neck press and blow’ (NNPB) glass manufacturing process.

The company said a cork mouth finish was relatively straightforward to achieve using the so-called ‘blow blow’ (BB) process but was more difficult and untested under NNPB conditions.

Narrow-neck press and blow technology trends up

According to a 2008 WRAP report on The Future of Glass Forming Technology for the Manufacture of Lightweight Containers​, BB technology was the dominant glass bottle forming process but NNPB has become the dominant technology in recent years.

To produce bottles using both technologies, a glass preform or parison produced in a ‘blank’ mold is rapidly transferred to a finishing mold and blown to form the final container shape.

In the BB process, final glass distribution will be affected by the blown glass distribution in the parison which is not completely uniform; Press and Blow (PB) uses a metal plunger to press the parison into shape to better control glass distribution.

“The development of the NNPB process has allowed for a significant reduction in the weight of glass bottles. NNPB is similar to press and blow, however it uses a much narrower plunger which allows the formation of narrow neck bottles,”​ the WRAP report states.

Neck embossing: A first for Ardagh in UK spirits

Neck embossing – another first for Ardagh as a company in the UK spirits sector – also features on the bottle; as a result of these two innovations the bottles is 20% lighter, with more prominent embossed branding on the neck.

Julie Doyle, global brand director for Sailor Jerry, said that Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum, with its links to Norman ‘Sailor Jerry’ Collins, was inspired by an era when goods were made by hand and people had a stronger sense of pride in their work. 

“The new packaging has been introduced to align the brand’s look and old school feel with the premium, authentic nature of the spirit,”​ she said.

We were awaiting further comment from Ardagh at the time of writing.

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