The World Cup Football tournament in South Africa is on everybody’s mind. So South African Breweries Ltd. (SAB), SABMiller plc’s subsidiary in South Africa, decided to take as much advantage as possible, as the World Cup Football tournament traditionally gives beer companies the ohh-so-welcome brief spike in sales.
With 400,000 people expected to visit South Africa in June for the World Cup, SAB Miller is anticipating a 4 to 6% increase in demand for beer in the country during the tournament. The company has not put any figure on how it expects the tournament to affect demand globally but some sort of boost is anticipated.
To allow that increase to materialize, SABMiller introduced a can with a full-aperture end, which transforms the can into a convenient drinking cup.
The beer-drinking experience
After years of an almost-still-standing development, the aluminium can, hitting the market for the first time in 1958, finally sees some innovation. With the introduction of the ring-pull tab, first seen in the latter half of 1962, which design consisted of an aluminium tab that was integrally riveted to the can’s aluminium lid, consumers could pull up and outward on the ring to remove the tab, revealing a keyhole-shaped opening large enough to permit simultaneous air intake and pouring. However, its drawbacks, including cut fingers and disposed tabs on beaches and on the ground in picnic areas, eventually led to the development of the stay-on tab, first supplied by Reynolds Metals Co. to Coca-Cola in 1976.
To improve the consumer’s drinking experience Coors Brewing Company introduced the Vented Wide Mouth Can in April 2008, in an attempt to satisfy the beer drinkers of whom more than half did not like the way their beer pours from a can and wanted a smoother pour. The new eight percent wider opening on all 12-oz Coors Light and Coors Banquet cans, allowed for a smoother pour, drinks like a frosty glass (according to the brewery) and delivers a draft-like experience that reduces the vacuum or “glugging” effect.
SABMiller’s imitation of a frosty beer glass
Developed exclusively for SABMiller by metal packaging manufacturer Crown Holdings, the new full aperture end, the first in the world, allows the entire can lid to be removed, turning the can into a drinking cup so removing the need for glassware and plastic cups, as consumers can now drink directly from the container.
The can, baptized Castle Can, was devised to reduce queues at bars around the event, with a quicker serving time, without compromising on the drinking experience.
Being made from aluminium, the can is fully recyclable. Alright, but ….. Although I think it is a brilliant idea and a very interesting development, I have one objection. One of the reasons the Stay-on Tab was developed as replacement for the Ring-pull Tap was the Ring-pull Tap littering beaches and events. I am wondering what happens with all the (sharp-edged) lids after entirely removed from the can. Are people in these days more aware of the environment and willing to use the trash bin to drop the lid into? I doubt it. People are notorious polluters and ignorant creatures. Consequently some more development is required.