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Note from the editor

Food and drink packaging is just as important as what's inside.

Packaging serves as a way to keep food fresh and protected from the time it was made until it's enjoyed by the consumer. It provides the all-important first impression of a product and what sets it apart from competitors. It provides the first opportunity a manufacturer has to tell the consumer about the product, what it looks like, how it's used, what's in it and how healthy it is.

But most importantly nowadays, packaging is a way that manufacturers can show their views on sustainability.  And that is becoming one of the most important qualifiers to consumers right now. According to research from Trivium Packaging in a partnership with Boston Consulting Group, more than two out of three consumers said environmentally friendly, recyclable packaging was important to them. Almost three in four said they would pay more for sustainable packaging.

According to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency statistics reported by MarketWatch, food and packaging make up about 45% of items in U.S. landfills. But companies are looking to ways to improve their packaging, using less disposable and more recyclable materials. Not only can these materials represent sustainability to consumers, but they also can sometimes improve transportability, transparency and shelf life.

This report looks at several aspects of food and beverage packaging, with a particular focus on how it is becoming more sustainable. These include:

  • Paper bottles for spirits and soft drinks coming from Pepsi and Diageo in 2021.
  • Wine bottles made from 94% recycled paperboard created by British company Frugalpac. 
  • New sustainable packaging concepts for meat products, including films and trays that use less material and larvae that can consume polystyrene packaging.
  • The resurgence of glass as a reusable and transparent packaging solution.
  • New concepts in drink packaging that enhances consumer experience and beverage preservation.
  • The popularity of reusable packaging concepts, like TerraCycle's Loop program.
  • Vita Coco's new premium packaged water brand Ever & Ever, which uses an aluminum bottle to set it apart.
  • PepsiCo's moves toward more sustainable drink packaging, with more cans and fewer plastic bottles.
  • Moves by PepsiCo and Coca-Cola to create interactive water coolers for consumers' own containers, eliminating the need for disposable bottles.

We hope you enjoy this look at food and beverage packaging.

Megan Poinski Senior Reporter

Diageo and PepsiCo will debut paper bottles in 2021

The alcohol giant will launch the 100% plastic-free packaging for Johnnie Walker whisky early next year, while PepsiCo and Unilever are developing it for their products.

Sustainable packaging company launches wine bottle made from 94% recycled paper

The Frugal Bottle has a carbon footprint up to 84% lower than a glass bottle and a third less than a recycled plastic one.

New discoveries sharply curtail food packaging waste

Glass: Packaging that's clearly worth a second look

As consumers want packaging that is safe, sustainable, premium and transparent, manufacturers are increasingly going back to an old stalwart.

Beyond bottles: How today's drink packages quench consumers' thirst

Resealable cans, portability, sustainability and reinvented user experiences are helping beverage companies stand out on crowded shelves.

Why reusable food packaging has a promising future

Consumers are looking for both convenience and sustainability, and companies are responding with containers, bottles and bags designed for many uses.

Vita Coco maker thirsts for aluminum as it enters competitive bottled water space

PepsiCo takes the lead in more sustainable drink packaging

Coca-Cola and PepsiCo reduce dependency on plastics with water dispenser systems