After 10 years in development, European vegetable canner, Bonduelle, has launched a new food can that delivers enhanced consumer appeal and significant environmental benefits. The packaging, from Ardagh Group (www.ardaghgroup.com), is a significant advance in drawn walled and ironed (DWI) can production. The company also has been able to use nitrogen dosing techniques, similar to those used in the beverage industry, for the first time in food canning.
Can lightweighting provides environmental savings and increases sustainability. Beading on the can has been removed to form a more premium look and feel, while the new sleek surface of the can allows for premium label application or for direct printing onto the can. The new 400-g can uses 15 percent less material, thanks largely to a 43 percent reduction in the can wall thickness. The introduction of nitrogen dosing in a consistent and controlled way, and how best to accommodate the increased internal pressure upon the can bottom and end, also presented a design challenge to the Ardagh team. The new can can now withstand pressures of up to 4.5 bar.
The concept for this type of can goes back six years to when a pilot line was commissioned at Ardagh's R&D center in Crosmiиres, France, based on finite element analysis (FEA) techniques established several years earlier to numerically calculate suitable can concepts and design. The project started in earnest in May 2011, once the first patent was granted, covering both can geometry and shape, in addition to the re-engineered easy-open end and new pressure-resistant can bottom.
The Bonduelle cans are made at Ardagh's DWI advanced production facility in Deventer in the Netherlands and are filled at Bonduelle's facility in Vaulx Vraucourt, in northern France. The first application of the new packaging is on Bonduelle's Winter Vegetable range.
Commercial and marketing director of Bonduelle, Agnes Dion, says, "Through close cooperation with Ardagh, we are delighted to continue Bonduelle's track record of being first to market with new product innovations. This new concept contains so many benefits for the consumer and is a true success story for sustainable metal packaging."