Case Study

Nitro Hotfill First for 38mm wide neck format

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Polish company Fortuna Sp. z o.o.owner of the juice brands Fortuna and Pysio required an alternative to the aseptic filling process to provide a PET alternative to their glass bottles.  “Nitro Hotfill” technology offered a solution but so far, this had not been done with a 38mm neck format. Brand owners Fortuna Sp. z o.o. came to Esterform to develop the preform and bottle design to create this European first.

The use of heat to extend product life is well known, as are the challenges of then filling plastic bottles with  hot liquids. The panelling caused as hot liquids cool in a sealed bottle can lead to compromise in the bottle design, and the higher temperatures challenge the integrity of the bottle shape and function. Whilst the technique of nitro hot filling has been mastered for narrower neck formats, the 38mm neck format used widely in the juice filling market presented a new challenge.

Esterform designed a bespoke 38mm preform capable of handling the increased temperatures. The preforms were developed in conjunction with bottle design, to mimic existing glass products, but with all the benefits of PET. Esterform worked with the filling line manufactures Krones, and tool makers Husky, to ensure that both the bottle and preform designs were fully compatible with the nitro hot fill filling line process.

By adding a precise dose of liquid nitrogen to the head space of the bottle, the drop in pressure created as the beverage cools down can be counteracted. Esterform’s experience as the UKs largest PET bottle manufacturer ensured the design and performance requirements of the bottle were delivered.

Polmlek needed a solution to be able to take their product to market without the costly investment of an aseptic filling line, and in packaging that their consumers would associate with their established brands. Esterform’s technical team has been able to develop both the preform and bottle design delivering real innovation in process capabilities.

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