Monterey Wine Company Buys First Frugal Bottle Assembly Machine in US

US wine and spirits brands will now be able to order revolutionary low carbon paper bottles “Made in America” thanks to a deal that sees California’s Monterey Wine Company become the first American company to acquire the world’s only paper bottle assembly machine.

Monterey Wine Company (MWC), a Californian custom wine production facility, has agreed a deal with British sustainable packaging company Frugalpac to become the first US company to buy a Frugal Bottle Assembly Machine. It’s the second paper bottle machine Frugalpac has sold for export after Canada’s KinsBrae Packaging agreed to buy the first machine in June 2022 and will now double paper bottle production in North America to five million a year. 

The Frugal Bottle Assembly Machine allows Frugal Bottles to be made in the heart of the winery and so reduce carbon further through shipping less volume from formed glass bottles from central manufacturing facilities.

Bringing flat recycled paperboard and pouches into the winery to be assembled reduces the amount of delivery trucks by four. Investing in the Frugal Bottles Assembly machine brings the Frugal Bottle cost down dramatically due to reduced shipping costs and local manufacture.

Frugal Bottles are made from 94% recycled paperboard with a food grade pouch and weighing just 83g before filled and are five times lighter than glass. This means they have a carbon footprint six times lower than glass bottles. They also offer 360° branding for exceptional, impactful shelf presence.

MWC is based in the US heart of wine-production, in King City on the Central Coast of California. With over 80% of all U.S. wines produced in California, lightweight Frugal Bottles offer drinks producers the opportunity to radically decarbonise their bottles.

MWC, which is within a 200-mile radius of all California’s main appellations, had already established a dedicated filling service for brands to fill Frugal Bottles for wine and spirits brands in the US.

Today’s announcement means the paper bottles will now also be made in California and MWC can offer bottle production, filling and packing in an end-to-end service for the US drinks industry.

More than 35 different drinks producers from around the world have launched 120 different SKUs of wines, spirits and olive oils in the Frugal Bottle.

They are available in 25 countries including Japan, North America, the UK, across Europe, Scandinavia, Australia, and South Africa. 1.8 million paper bottles have been produced since 2020, saving 832 tonnes of CO2e

At least four North America drinks brands are using the Frugal Bottle including Michigan’s Signal 7 Wines, Florida’s Half Shell Vodka, California’s Melody Lynne and Las Vegas’ Demon Rum.

In North America, Frugalpac is currently working on 31 live enquiries from a pool of 237 for Frugal Bottles which equates to an annualised volume of 11 million Frugal Bottles per annum for North America from the live enquires, rising to 48 million from the full pool.

Recent research by Lux Research found more than 35 million Americans are interested in finding more sustainable wine packaging.

A recent poll of nearly 2,500 wine merchants and producers by ProWein found 11% of traders around the world plan to list paper wine bottles in their stores in the next two years. This figure rose to 14% in the US, 29% of traders in the UK and a third (33%) in Norway.

In February this year the Frugal Bottle with Signal 7’s bottle won Best in Class for Technical Design in Packaging Innovation and an Award of Distinction in the Sustainable Design category at the PAC Global’s Packaging Awards in New York and SME of the Year in the UK Green Business Awards.

Monterey Wine Company’s Director of Personnel and Finance-General Manager Shannon Valladarez said: “We are very proud to be the first US company to produce the revolutionary paper Frugal Bottle.

“Drinks brands around the world are looking to decarbonise and the bottle accounts for up to 50% of a wine’s carbon footprint. By moving to our Frugal Bottle, they will be able to slash the bottle’s carbon footprint by 84% and that’s a huge game changer.

“We were hugely impressed by the global success of the Frugal Bottle and felt the time was right to invest in Frugalpac’s machine so we can produce the bottles in the US, making it easier for drinks brands to move to a more sustainable packaging.

“We are already taking orders from drinks brands across the US and predict we will see a paper bottle revolution sweep across America.”

Frugalpac CEO Malcolm Waugh added: “This is a big moment not only for Frugalpac but the US drinks industry. Now American wine and spirits brands will be able to buy and fill paper bottles made in America for the first time.

“Our Frugal Bottle and Frugal Bottle Assembly Machine offers a really simple and cost-effective way for wineries and spirits producers to radically cut their bottle’s carbon footprint at a stroke. They will also be able to use 360-degree branding to achieve maximum shelf stand out in stores.

“We’ve already seen several wine and spirits in North America use our paper bottle and MWC’s decision to buy our Frugal Bottle Assembly Machine means even more drinks brands will be able to make the move from glass to paper.”

UK Minister for Exports Lord Offord said:

“This is brilliant news for Frugalpac whose Frugal Bottle is a great British innovation that will help the US drinks industry decarbonise. 

“The collaboration with Monterey Wine Company is a fantastic example of how our two countries can work together to increase trade and meet our Net Zero goals.” 

As well as global enquiries to make 120m Frugal Bottles a year, Frugalpac also has strong enquiries from more than 100 other international brand, contract packing and packaging companies to buy Frugal Bottle Assembly Machines. Each machine is able to produce 2.5 million Frugal Bottles a year.

Last year Canadian packaging firm KinsBrae Packaging became the first company in the world to buy a Frugal Bottle Assembly Machine – called FBAM-1 – and are installing it in Canada. It should be operational in the next two months.

Frugalpac calls on all wineries, distillers, contract fillers and packaging businesses to invest in the Frugal Bottle Bottle Assembly Machines to meet the high demands for the Frugal Bottles around the world to reduce carbon and increase their sales of the wines, spirits and packaging.

About Monterey Wine Company

The Monterey Wine Company is a custom wine production facility located in King City on the Central Coast of California. We are an environmentally and socially conscious producer and customer crush service provider.

We offer the latest in premium wine-making technologies, quality custom crush and processing equipment, experienced blend development, and efficient bottling capabilities to complement our client’s needs. We provide a sound working environment for the wine traditionalist, inventor and entrepreneur. Our emphasis on innovation, integrity and service is what sets us apart from the rest.

We provide a full spectrum of services, from grape sourcing to specialty crush processing through aging, blending, and bottling. We offer the tools and expertise to develop and produce the highest quality and most imaginative wines for today’s innovative market.

Located two hours from Santa Clara, Santa Barbara and Kern Counties, our custom crush program comes from all directions, while focusing on our backyard appellations in the Monterey and San Luis Obispo Counties.

About Frugalpac

Frugalpac Limited is a British company developing a range of innovative sustainable packaging products. It creates and supplies recycled paper-based products with the lowest carbon footprint that are easily recycled again.

Its first product was the Frugal Cup, the world’s only easily recyclable beverage and food cup made from 96% recycled paper.

All Frugalpac products are made from at least 90% recycled paper, are easily recyclable again and have the lowest carbon footprint compared with conventional and compostable packaging.

Frugalpac has secured £16.6m in funding, £5.6m since 2019. Ata time when British business was struggling and funding was in short supply, this young business secured the finance it requires for the next stage of its development.

About the Frugal Bottle

  • It’s lighter. The Frugal Bottle weighs just 83g so it is up to five times lighter than a normal glass bottle, making it easier to carry and lighter to transport.
  • It’s better for the environment. An independent Life Cycle Analysis by Intertek found the Frugal Bottle, which is made from recycled paperboard with no chemicals, has a carbon footprint up to six times (84%) lower than a glass bottle and more than a third less than a bottle made from 100% recycled plastic. The Frugal Bottle’s water footprint is also at least four times lower than glass.
  • It’s easy to recycle again. Simply separate the plastic food-grade pouch from the paper bottle and put them in your respective recycling bins. The food grade pouch is certified recyclable and is a polyethylene metallised polyester laminate, the same material used in bag in box wines.
  • It uses less plastic than a plastic bottle. The Frugal Bottle uses up to 77% less plastic. Only 15g compared to a 64g bottle made from 100% recycled plastic. The food grade pouch is a polyethylene metallised polyester laminate, the same material used in bag in box wines. It is recyclable.
  • It stands out. As the Frugal Bottle is made from recycled paperboard, it allows for 360-degree branding across the bottle. No other wine or spirits bottle looks or feels like it, so it stands out on shelf and table.
  • It’s better for wine producers. The Frugal Bottle can be produced in the heart of their bottling facility, offers complete freedom on design and print, is more cost effective to transport than glass bottles while reducing their carbon footprint further.

~News Release

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