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combifit sets trends – new formats, many sizes
It is an eye-catcher and stands out on the shelf: SIG Combibloc’s elegant, slender combifit carton pack is on top form. And in its anniversary year, combifit is still a trend-setter: what started out in 2001 as an innovation in the one-litre format with combifitPremium has been a world-wide success story since then. Now, ten years after its debut, combifit is available in a total of five different formats ranging from 150 to 1,500 ml. And this extra-ordinary format series has enough potential to be further extended in future.
Ralf Mosbacher, Head of Global Product Management at SIG Combibloc: “With combifit we marketed a carton pack with a strikingly different appearance that brought modern dynamics and elegance to the world of aseptic carton packs which, while thoroughly practical, had been almost entirely rectangular up to that point. The combifit system has undergone continuous further development and improvement since it was introduced. This relates to further technological advances, as well as the broad range of different formats and volumes that we have on offer for combifit today. Consumer-relevant features such as new, convenient screw caps have also proved themselves ideal for combifit.”
Differentiation and functionality
The Swiss company Bischofszell Nahrungsmittel AG was the very first customer worldwide to launch combifitPremium 1,000 ml for its “actilife” product range, which was the first chapter in the combifit success story. It set an example and in doing so created a point of differentiation for the “actilife” drinks on the shelf. The nicely shaped packaging did more than just appeal to consumers visually; it also scored when it came to handling. Its shape makes it an ergonomic fit in the hand. The typical slanted top on the packs is fitted with a screw cap. The large opening provides for easy pouring. The shape − which is curved outwards at the front and inwards at the back − also makes combifit a logistical success, as the packs can be stacked behind each other to save space, during shipping and in the warehouse, on the store shelf and in the cupboard.
Mosbacher continues: “A further, quite significant plus for filling companies in the beverages industry is that a standard SIG Combibloc filling machine for beverages can fill both traditional combibloc and also combifit packs as long as they have the same base dimensions. This can be done in a range of volumes and any desired package design. Thus products can be positioned in just the right way for the market and the respective target group. The aseptic filling process is the same for both combibloc and combifit. Only the packaging sleeves differ in their specific creasing lines, which later determine the packaging form. The same flexibility is also offered by the applicators, which provide the shape of the sealed combifit packs once the filling process is complete. They also apply the caps to the traditional combibloc as well as to combifit.”
Today, alongside the traditional combibloc packs, the corresponding combifit variants are available in the Mini, Small, Midi, Premium and Magnum formats. The small-size packs combibloc and combifit in the Mini and Small format can all be fitted with a drinking straw; combifitSmall is also available with the practical combiSmart screw cap.
Design supports form
A refined packaging design enables beverage manufacturers to give further emphasis to the unusual shape of combifit. Says Mosbacher: “We are currently very happy with some particularly creative product examples – for instance Sunraysia's premium quality juice range, which is the first brand in the UK to use combifitMidi 750 ml with screw cap combiSwift since April. The green, trapezoidal claim panels on the almost entirely white display perfectly underline the unusual shape of combifit carton packs and have a strong accentuating effect. They are excellently suited for use as additional promotional spaces for product and brand messages.” Mosbacher considers that combifit offers best opportunities: “We will continue the success story of the attractively shaped packaging that we have enjoyed to date – in terms of adapting to new technologies and new features such as innovative opening solutions.”
Source: SIG Combibloc