SEPTEMBER 2009

Sutter Home switches to recyclable plastic wine bottles

Sutter Home Winery is now using PET bottles from Ball Corporation for all 187mL wine bottles that feature Plasmax®, a transparent, internal silicon oxide barrier coating technology that protects the wine and provides exceptional clarity without contaminating the PET recycling stream because it is easily removed during the recycling process.

“The plastic bottles weigh only one sixth what the glass bottles weigh and they’re much smaller, so consumers get the same amount of wine in a smaller, unbreakable, less wasteful and recyclable bottle,” said Wendy Nyberg, senior director of marketing for Sutter Home.

Sutter Home began using the custom-designed PET wine bottles in select markets in 2005 and has gradually increased distribution. The bottles preserve the look of the original glass container and run on the winery’s existing filling lines. Sutter Home has been pleased with consumer acceptance of the plastic wine bottles as well as the entree they provide into venues that do not allow glass because of the potential for breakage.

Plasmax provides an FDA-compliant, enhanced passive barrier for oxygen sensitive products. This ultra thin (less than 100 nm) material is transparent and resists cracking, abrasion and delamination. Because Plasmax does not degrade over time, the length of time bottle inventory can be stored is not limited by the barrier material.

A recycling study conducted according to the European PETCORE protocols demonstrated that Plasmax is removable during the recycling process and does not negatively affect any of the test requirements.