Bag-in-box technology originated in Australia in 1965. Used by the wine industry, it is now expanding to other categories such as juice, soft drinks, oils and sauces.
And as bottled water sales continue to climb, people are looking for more convenient and sustainable ways to purchase it.
A new addition
DS Smith Rapak manufactures Bag-in-Box packaging, and partners with brands to bag liquids for retail and online clients, as well as food service and industrial shipping needs.
With more and more people buying water online, Harrogate decided to launch the 10l bag-in-box packaging as a larger packaging size format to ‘satisfy the need of multi-generational families and be committed to the environment’.
Harrogate is DS Smith’s first water client in Europe, and the packaging company says the launch illustrates demand from new sectors for the Bag-in-Box format .
“The biggest [bag categories] traditionally have been wine and juice, and the bulk of our volume goes there. But we’re seeing a lot of demand coming from new sectors such as dairy, edible oils and the pharmaceutical industry. Water is still niche [but growing] for us,” Anastasia Khodakova, marketing manager at DS Smith, told BeverageDaily.
According to DS Smith, the bag-in-box benefits the environment and consumer accessibility: “Bag-in-Box does not need to be lifted in order to pour, which makes it convenient for children and seniors to use.”
DS Smith says the square packaging makes the box it easy to store on the countertop or in the refrigerator, with the liquid pouring out of a tap on the side. The square shape is also easier to ship, cuts down on truck journeys and reduces carbon emissions.
The Harrogate Spring Water Bag-in-Box uses an “additive-free barrier bag” in order to keep the water fresher for longer and is free from phthalates and Bisphenol A. It is sold directly from Harrogate’s website as well as on Amazon and Ocado.
Khodakova predicts the Bag-in-Box water market will continue growing, but isn’t likely to eclipse traditional packaging in the mainstream.
“In brick-and-mortar retail, it would never become the main packaging format [for water]. But in food service and e-commerce it’s growing a lot. So we see its potential mainly due to the growth of these two channels,” she said.