Coors strengthens PET as an option - but a niche one

By Paul Gander

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Glass, Polyethylene terephthalate

Coors strengthens PET as an option - but a niche one
Despite public and local authority concern about city-centre drinking and alcohol-related violence, brewers aim to keep beer in plastics as a niche...

Despite public and local authority concern about city-centre drinking and alcohol-related violence, brewers aim to keep beer in plastics as a niche alternative to glass for events rather than for the mainstream licensed trade.

Coors Brewers has just launched its flagship premium lager in a 330ml polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottle. The aim is to give licensees the option of a glass-free environment, an area where the National Union of Students’ Services has led the way in the UK.

“All of our lager brands are now available in plastic,” says a spokesman for Coors. “But you shouldn’t use this as a sticking plaster for irresponsible behaviour. Some police forces and licensing authorities are pressing for plastic to be more widely used. But the government view remains that it should be available for specific situations such as music and sports events.”

A spokesman for Westminster Council, London, the biggest licensing authority in the UK, says: “Our licensing enforcement team might suggest that bars and clubs with outdoor consumption should use plastic glasses and bottles, but I don’t think we can currently enforce that as a condition of licensing.”

Communications director at the British Beer and Pub Association Mark Hastings adds that there would be concerns about shelf-life and flavour, as well as the environment, if plastics were used more widely in mainstream licensing.

Coors, for its part, is keen to talk up the improved oxygen barrier achieved on this most recent generation of PET bottles, which are produced by Constar International.

Related topics: Packaging materials

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