Danish beer company Carlsberg has revealed two paper beer bottle prototypes that are recyclable and made from sustainably-sourced wood fibre.
The two research prototypes for its Green Fibre Bottle have an inner barrier to allow them to contain beer, the firm announced today.
One version is lined with a thin film of recycled PET plastic polymer film, the other uses a bio-based lining. Carlsberg is now progressing to testing the barrier technology.
Myriam Shingleton, vice president group for development at Carlsberg Group, said she was pleased with the progress made so far on the paper beer bottle prototypes.
“While we are not completely there yet, the two prototypes are an important step towards realising our ultimate ambition of bringing this breakthrough to market,” she said.
“Innovation takes time and we will continue to collaborate with leading experts in order to overcome remaining technical challenges, just as we did with our plastic-reducing Snap Pack [plastic-free beer can packaging].”
The Snack Packs feature beer cans that were glued together, instead of held together by plastic rings that often end up polluting the ocean and can harm animal life. It took Carlsberg and its partners three years to develop the technology.
Shingleton added that paper beer bottles are better for the environment than aluminum or glass because they are sourced in a sustainable way, and because the material has a “very low impact on production process”.
“The energy and efficiency of the technology that we’re using” reduce carbon emissions compared to other production processes, she said.
The company hopes to eventually create a 100% bio-based bottle without polymers, an aim which forms part of Carlsberg’s wider sustainability goals to achieve zero carbon emissions at its breweries and a 30% cut in its full value chain CO2 footprint by 2030 against a 2015 baseline.
Carlsberg has been working on the paper bottle designs since 2015 alongside tech firm ecoXpac, packaging company BillerudKorsnäs, and researchers from Danish Technical University.
Together they established a paper bottle company called Paboco.
Carlsberg also revealed it has joined a new “paper bottle community” alongside Coca-Cola Company, the spirits firm the Absolut Company, and French brand L’Oreal, aimed at further developing green packaging.
“The work with our partners since 2015 on the Green Fibre Bottle illustrates that this kind of innovation can happen when we work together,” added Shingleton.
“We’re delighted that other like-minded companies have now joined us as part of Paboco’s paper bottle community. Partnerships such as these, ones that are united by a desire to create sustainable innovations, are the best way to bring about real change.”