By: Berlin Packaging Specialist
Date: October 20, 2019
Forto, a coffee company built on wholesome energy, has enlisted the help of Berlin Packaging in designing a catchy look for its new coffee shot energy product. The energy drink provides two regular coffee cups’ worth of caffeine in less than two ounces of liquid. Therefore, Forto wanted its packaging to resemble the feel and appearance of a cup found in local coffee shops, except in a miniature version.
“For the packaging, Forto wanted to come as close as possible in feel and appearance to the type of coffee cup received at popular coffee shops– only in an extremely tiny version,” says Andrew Sanguinet, director of industrial design at Berlin Packaging’s Studio One Eleven. “The finished package is spill-proof and small enough to toss into a pocket or purse, ready for either a sip or a shot whenever the consumer needs a quick energy boost.”
Berlin Packaging needed to overcome several obstacles to meet these needs. The package’s structure features a coffee-cup-lid-style snap-on closure. Forto wanted its energy drink to be associated with coffee, instead of one of the many energy drink products currently on the market. The product includes a brown closure, as well as an embossed “FORTO Strong Coffee” logo on top of the cap.“
A number of challenges were overcome with regard to filling and sealing the cup – and a perfect miniature version of the coffee cups everyone loves was still produced,” explains Sanguinet. “Creating a manufacturable package presented challenges ranging from the need to hot-fill the product without melting the resin to identifying a liner that would work with the snap-on closure.”
The coffee’s shrink sleeve has a brown motif to catch the customer’s eye. The initial designs had the coffee taking the form of a more traditional blow-molded HDPE bottle with a threaded shoulder intended to be sealed by induction and accommodate a screw-cap closure. Unlike other popular energy drinks, Forto’s coffee packaging needs to withstand a hot-fill pasteurization process on the manufacturing line.
Berlin Packaging decided on an appropriate material and nominal wall thickness for the cup. The final product features a special injection-molded polypropylene resin that is capable of withstanding the 190-degree filling temperatures on the manufacturing line while maintaining full integrity and durability.
The closure and seal designs have a conduction-sealed lid with a custom foil-based liner. The liner is affixed to the cup before being capped off with the snap-on coffee-cup-style lid closure. “Berlin was a true partner in the process, in every sense of the word,” says Sanguinet. “We chose them for their incomparable design and engineering expertise.”
According to Forto, the package is spill-proof and small enough to toss into a pocket or purse. “The design undoubtedly creates visual fun and catches the shopper’s eye as intended,” says Sanguinet. “Customers and retailers love it. Although it is still too early to report on sales impact, the design is universally described as adorable– and quite irresistible– in the marketplace.”
In order to provide “energy on the go,” Forto follows several steps in producing its coffee. The coffee is cold brewed by slowly steeping it for over 20 hours. The company then blends in extra natural caffeine extracted from more ultra-premium Arabica coffee beans.
The early reviews have been positive, as well. The package recently won Silver recognition in the Best Use of Custom Packaging category at the 2016 NACD Packaging Awards. “We take great pride in achieving goals that benefit our customers,” adds Sanguinet. “It is always an honor for the results of our work to be acknowledged by our industry peers.”
The coffee is cold brewed by slowly sleeping it for over 20 hours.