Ball

Beverage Cans


Ball takes pride in creating sustainable beverage packaging that is also smart, practical and eye-catching. Delivering unrilvaled benefits, the beverage can is 100 percent and infinitely recyclable, lightweight, strong and economical. The aluminum can is the preferred package among today's brands and consumers because it chills faster, is the world’s most recycled beverage container, and its unique stacking ability and high cube efficiency makes transport and storage easy and efficient.

Beverage Cans: The Most Sustainable Package

Click "play" to learn more about the can's sustainability benefits.

TACKLING CLIMATE TOGETHER


In addition to metal packaging’s unique sustainability credentials, such as infinite recyclability and versatility, a multitude of factors influence the product environmental footprint of a beverage can. To simplify complex interdependencies of sustainability aspects in the can’s life cycle, Ball developed and was the first can maker to publicly commit to an ambitious product carbon footprint reduction target. Cut/4 CArboN is yet another example of how we prove that our customer’s mission is critical to us: they want to know how we contribute to the achievement of their own ambitious carbon footprint targets.
 

LESS WEIGHT, SMALLER FOOTPRINT


Lightweighting is a major contributor to our 2020 beverage can carbon footprint reduction target. Success stories from the reporting period include:
 
  • Through lightweighting, we reduced aluminum use in our Global Metal Beverage Packaging business by more than 30,000 metric tons, which equates to saving more than 100,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions, or the emissions of 21,000 U.S. passenger vehicles per year.
  • Ball introduced an ultra-light can in Europe. A step change in can manufacturing, this first-ever 33-centiliter aluminum can body weighs less than 10 grams. Compared to its predecessor, this ultralight can saves approximately 5 percent metal.
  • In Asia, we continued to convert to a smaller diameter can end, resulting in an end that is approximately 25 percent lighter.
 
Coors Light Bottles
Case Study: Aluminum Bottle Revolution
What if you could get the portability, recyclability and freshness of a can, but you didn’t have to give up the reclosability benefits of a bottle? Ball manufactures the lightest 16-ounce aluminum beverage bottles on the market and we successfully converted several customers to Alumi-Tek® from other available bottle technologies.

When compared to these alternatives, our bottles use approximately 50 percent less aluminum, resulting in a significantly reduced environmental footprint. Building on the knowledge we gained in over a decade of aluminum bottle manufacturing, we began manufacturing The Coca-Cola Company’s contour-shaped aluminum beverage bottle in the U.S. in 2015. A result of close customer collaboration, and the dedication of our innovation and operations teams, this new bottle is a standout on premise and in retail locations.

The shaped bottle weighs approximately 15 percent less than the competitive product, which was on the market in 2015, and has an estimated 11 percent lower carbon footprint. With that, it provides a valuable contribution to Coca-Cola’s ambitious goal of reducing the carbon footprint of “the drink in your hand” by 25 percent by 2020.


 
Customer Perspective

"Julius Robert von Mayer once said “Energy is never lost, it is only redistributed." As much as this statement applies to our energy drink, it also describes the attributes of the beverage can it comes in.

At Red Bull, we are well aware of the environmental impacts along the life cycle of our product. And we are going to great lengths to ensure its carbon footprint stays as small as possible. Our long-term partnership with Ball enabled us to create some unique sustainable supply chain solutions. For example, Ball supplies about 5 billion cans annually to our filling locations wall-to-wall, which means cans are manufactured and filled on the same site. That requires fewer trucks on the road to transport empty cans and saves more than 11,000 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions each year.

The fact that beverage cans have the highest real recycling rate of all beverage packaging substrates is a great achievement and reinforces that we correctly picked the right substrate when we first introduced Red Bull back in 1987. Unfortunately, littering remains a challenge in some regions. Ensuring that cans are recycled helps keep our landscapes pristine, increases recycling rates and saves resources. And it reduces the amount of energy that is required to produce aluminum from scratch by 95 percent.

That is why we collaborate with Ball and other partners to increase recycling rates around the world and create a thriving circular economy. Every Can Counts in Austria and other European countries is just one example of how we take an innovative approach to consumer education at Red Bull-sponsored events to convey that recycling cans is so critical.

We look forward to continued partnership with Ball to achieve our business goals and our shared ambition to have the can recognized as the most sustainable packaging format for beverages."


 
- Werner L. Depauly, Global Head of Procurement and Sustainability, Red Bull