Chilled coffee break: Self-chilling can technology hits US shelves

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31 May 2018 --- A new product that is claimed to be the worlds “first ever” self-chilling can, patented and licensed by the Joseph Company International Inc., has hit the US market this month. US retail store 7-Eleven will test the can, coined the Chill-Can, by rolling out Fizzics Sparkling Cold Brew Coffee in the self-chilling technology. 

The mechanism behind the can has been in development for more than 25 years, the Joseph Company International state, and could revolutionize the way consumers enjoy cold beverages as part of their busy, on-the-go lifestyles. 

The Chill-Can has a built-in Heat Exchange Unit (HEU) which contains the technology necessary to chill the drink in about one minute. Upon activation, the technology kick-starts the environmentally safe reclaimed CO2 in the HEU that leads to the chilling of the beverage. The can utilizes a twist-activation method.

“Because the self-chilling can technology is so groundbreaking, we wanted to introduce it with a super innovative beverage,” says Tim Cogil, 7-Eleven Director of Private Brands. 

“Sparkling coffee sodas met all the criteria. Previously available in some coffee shops, a handful of exclusive canned carbonated brews began showing up last summer. Fizzics will be the first that can be chilled on demand, bringing a new level of convenience to customers who want to enjoy a chilled drink whenever and wherever they are.”

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The Chill-Can has a built-in Heat Exchange Unit (HEU)
​​​​​​which contains the technology necessary
to chill the drink in about one minute.

Consumers may have to familiarize themselves with the can's instructions before use, which are as follows:

  • Place the can on a flat surface, turn the can upside down and twist the base to activate until a constant hissing noise is heard.
  • Do not handle or touch the can after activation until the hissing stops. The warmth of being handheld can inhibit the cooling process.
  • Do not turn can right side up until hissing stops, which should be about 90 seconds.
  • Once the hissing stops, return the can to an upright position and open.

For years companies have been trying to crack the code on creating a viable, easy-to-use self-chilling can that could be made available to the general public. Not only is the concept of sparkling coffee innovative, but a can that self-chills may deliver a strong novelty factor to consumers, as well as tick the convenience box.

Canned Coffee?
As Cogil pointed out, such an innovative can should be paired with an innovative beverage: sparkling coffee.

FoodIngredientsFIrst has previously reported on the aluminum packaging sector, noting that although soda consumption levels are down, reflecting an increasingly sugar-conscious consumer, canned beer and water are on the rise.

“Craft brewers love aluminum cans – from virtually no market share a decade ago, today, around 500 small brewers are canning 2,000 different beers,” Matt Meenan, Senior Director of Public Affairs at The Aluminum Association, US, tells FoodIngredientsFirst.

“Beer is the main growth market for aluminum cans, which have risen from about 60 percent of the market a decade ago to around 70 percent of the market today (while glass has declined). We are also seeing growth in canned sparkling water, for example, LaCroix.”

The release of the sparkling coffee in a self-chilling can opens up a space for potential future innovations in the canned coffee space. Innova Market Insights' Top 2018 Trends peg “Beyond the coffee house” at number five. This trend reflects coffee's popular status among millennial and generation Z consumers and within this, cold-brew coffee stands tall.

The Fizzics Sparkling Cold Brew Coffee drinks are available in three flavors: regular, french vanilla and caramel. They are made with 100 percent Arabica beans and tout all natural flavors. Each 8.4-ounce can of the fizzy brew contains just 50 calories, 10g of sugar and less than 80mg of caffeine.

By Laxmi Haigh

This feature is provided by FoodIngredientsFirst's sister website, PackagingInsights.

To contact our editorial team please email us at editorial@cnsmedia.com

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