Rigid box specialist Pollard Group has launched a unique pack solution that enables luxury drinks manufacturers to maximise on-shelf branding and presentation opportunities while providing a much more cost-efficient and automated boxing operation.
The FOTL (Front Opening, Top Loading) box, which has now been patented, enables a bottle to be placed automatically into the box from above. The innovation from Pollards was devised the meet the growing demand for front opening boxes while meeting the need among production departments for a method of filling that was more efficient and less costly. Previously bottles had to be placed into a front opening pack by hand, whereas the new box means it can now be filled on existing lines.
The FOTL boxes are delivered to the drinks company already packed into branded cases of six, meaning that the filled boxes are then ready for immediate onward delivery to retailers. In the retail outlet, the box is opened at the front, allowing the bottle to be showcased on-shelf to enhance its presence and appeal.
The FOTL box incorporates a vacuum forming in the base into which the bottle sits. The lid has a similar recess to hold the bottle firmly in place throughout the distribution chain. The lid also features protrusions on each side that lock into slots in the top of the box to prevent the lid from being removed, ensuring that the box can only then be opened from the front in the retail environment.
“The front opening box has revolutionised the presentation of luxury drinks in recent years, enabling companies to maximise the appeal and premium image of the bottle, which is a major part of the brand experience and selling process,” explains Peter Conner, Pollard Group’s Commercial Director. “However, production lines are geared up to fill boxes from the top.
“We therefore worked on a solution that could combine the best of both worlds, and in so doing have been able to satisfy the sometimes contradictory demands of production and marketing.”