Shrink the drink: Coca-Cola launches smaller packaging to cope with demographic changes in Japan

By Guan Yu Lim contact

- Last updated on GMT

Coca-Cola introduces new 350mL and 700mL PET bottles in Japan on January 13, 2020 ©Coca-Cola Japan
Coca-Cola introduces new 350mL and 700mL PET bottles in Japan on January 13, 2020 ©Coca-Cola Japan

Related tags: Japan, Coca-cola, Packaging, Pet

Beverage giant, Coca-Cola Japan has launched two new PET packaging sizes, 350mL and 700mL for its iconic drink.

The new PET packaging will only apply to Coca-Cola sold in supermarkets, drug stores, discount stores in the Tokyo, Kanagawa, Chiba and Saitama prefectures.

According to the firm’s Japan PR department, the existing core packaging sizes for Coca-Cola are 500mL PET and 1.5L PET. Besides PET, there are also a variety of glass (190mL), aluminum bottle (280mL) and can (350mL, 500mL) packaging.

The company said the two newly launched packaging were meant to meet changing consumer trends.

Smaller families, encourage home consumption

Japan is facing a demographic shift with shrinking birth rates and ageing population, which increases the number of smaller families, consisting of two or three people per household.

This has since changed the way sparkling beverages are consumed where previously large number of people shared large-sized packaging. It is now increasingly common for small groups of people to share small-sized beverages.

Coca-Cola said consumers have also shifted to drinking sparkling beverages at home, and with the two new packaging sizes, it hopes to capture this market.

According to the company, packaging sizes are important for sparkling beverages.

Sparkling beverages are best drunk ice-cold, when their stimulating carbonation and taste can be fully enjoyed.​”

Hence the type and size of the packaging must be optimised for the occasion of consumption as well as number of consumers drinking together.

The company proposed the existing 500mL PET packaging for consumers making purchases at convenience stores or vending machines, who consume immediately, while the 350mL and 700mL PET packaging were suggested for consumers purchasing from supermarkets, drugstores or discount stores for home consumption.

According to the Coca-Cola, the new sizes were touted as the ideal size for consumers to take home.

To offer consumers the maximum enjoyment of the great taste of Coca-Cola at home, the 350 ml PET bottles are intended for individual consumption and the 700mL PET bottles to consume with family members or friends.​”

The 700mL PET bottle is also conveniently sized for smaller families for which the 1.5L PET bottles are too much.

The new packaging is all recyclable and will be available in approximately 8,500 stores in Tokyo and three prefectures. These prefectures were chosen as smaller families were more concentrated there, Coca-Cola said.

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