All are important factors in helping beverage manufacturers to convert market opportunity into profitable, long-term success.
"There's no doubt that the CSD market is changing at an exceptional pace," says Stefano Baini, Product Manager for Regular Filling at Sidel. "However, with CSDs remaining one of the world's most valuable soft drink categories - exceeded in quantity sales only by bottled water - these changes are creating room for growth."
Opportunities in both emerging and established markets
In developed and emerging markets, there is a noticeable difference in the challenges that beverage producers face - yet both can offer opportunities for growth to the proactive CSD bottler.
In developed markets, the industry is seeing a shift to 'healthier' carbonated soft drinks. In 2015, 25% of global launches of new carbonated soft drinks carried some kind of 'natural' claim, which highlights the increasing role that such beverages are playing in the CSD market. This trend towards 'better-for-you' innovations shows no signs of slowing, with market analysts suggesting that they are likely to be important in the future prospects of CSDs in all the fastest-growing markets.
Production flexibility is key to success
In the global CSD market, commercial growth requires consumer understanding supported by flexible production technology. In fact, new technology continues to open up opportunities and helps manufacturers create the new products that consumers want while meeting their own needs for greater sustainability.
With equipment that can easily and quickly be converted to accommodate different stock-keeping units (SKUs), manufacturers can enjoy the flexibility to adapt to different market needs. Modular lines that can be easily converted to new beverage recipes and container formats are a quick and cost-effective way to get new products onto the supermarket shelves.
Over 85 years' experience in bottle filling
With a history in the filling of beverages dating back to the 1930s, Sidel now provides solutions for filling all kinds of beverages and liquids, including CSDs. A comprehensive range of beverage filling solutions offers performance, product quality, flexibility, hygienic design, food safety, minimal maintenance, automatic changeovers and quicker cleaning - together with lowest total cost of ownership (TCO).
Choosing the right filling technology is essential to producing a consistently high quality beverage. From the company's different solutions, Sidel helps producers to choose the filling technology best suited to their needs. The decision takes into account many factors, including the producer's hygienic requirements, their consumption of utilities, the skill levels of their operators and the ambient production and transportation conditions.
Alongside the need for the right technology is the means to identify how the beverage will perform within the bottle. Sidel has two laboratories for filling and aseptic microbiological contamination analysis in Parma, Italy - and two laboratories for liquid-packaging and aseptic analysis in Octeville, France, to support beverage producers around the world. In order to determine the most suitable size, shape, closure and PET resin to use for packaging, as well as identifying how it behaves during the filling process, Sidel experts test the recipe, viscosity, PH level and carbonations of the product being bottled over a period of time.
Sidel Matrix Filler SF300 FM for precision filling of still and carbonated soft drinks
Robust and reliable with a sturdy structure, the Sidel Matrix™ Filler SF300 FM is suitable for accurately filling still and carbonated drinks, offering quick changeovers without beverage loss. The latest generation of filling machine from Sidel, it utilises modules with proven reliability and delivers up to 98% efficiency, filling PET bottles with precision at rates of up to 80,000 bottles per hour (bph). It reduces the use of carbon dioxide gas (CO2) and, using servomotors, it also reduces the consumption of electrical power. In addition, it offers strict hygiene, fully automatic changeovers performed via HMI (Human Machine Interface), optimum uptime and highest productivity. With magnetic or mass flow meter control, the Sidel Matrix Filler SF300 FM ensures there are no limits in filling, whatever the beverage and regardless of conductivity level, providing the most accurate precision, avoiding any waste.
Smooth, safe handling avoids stress, reduces turbulence and prevents the unnecessary foaming of the carbonated beverages. This eliminates spillages and waste of the beverage being filled. Quick and easy to clean, the external beverage tank facilitates fast changeovers, saving even more time and reducing costs for the CSD producer. The Sidel Matrix Filler SF300 FM requires 30% less downtime for maintenance than comparable fillers.
Minimal product loss and reduced CO2 consumption
Sidel's compact, hygienic and safer Blendfill solution has a fully integrated filler and mixer to combine both processes in one system in order to minimise product loss when switching between beverages. A simplified solution with fewer components and functions, it has only one tank, utilising the Sidel Matrix Mixer SM500 beverage tank as a shared tank with the filler, avoiding redundant pressure and level control functions. This reduces consumption of CO2 as well as the equipment footprint. It ensures automatic and fast recipe changes by using a single HMI.
Complete solutions for CSD built for today and tomorrow
With consumer preferences changing in today's carbonated soft drinks market, product diversity is more important than ever for producers. Sidel's latest generation of equipment, Sidel Matrix, currently provides three times more configurations, enabling producers to package various carbonates, types of beverages and recipes in varying formats up to 3.5 litres. Finding the optimum solution for filling carbonated soft drinks goes beyond the initial choice of filling equipment; the best solution requires a flexible approach to the complete line. Technological advances are making PET bottling lines more sophisticated and line automation is expanding performance possibilities.
"Starting with the packaging itself, Sidel experts will help design and manufacture a complete CSD PET bottling line solution, right from the beginning, working closely with producers every step of the way. Sidel is able to fill containers with precision and efficiency while handling the products smoothly and gently. Regardless of the beverage type, we offer robust and reliable filling solutions, hygienically designed and based on extensive know-how and experience," concludes Stefano Baini.