Beer maker Grupo Modelo is the latest in a slew of Mexican businesses to take an innovative approach to environmentally friendly practices with a new interlocking beer can design that will do away with the brand’s six-pack rings.
The design and campaign for the new “Fit Packs,” a collaboration between the maker of Corona and the United States advertising company Leo Burnett, won a bronze lion Monday at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in France.
Marketing vice-president Carlos Ranero of Grupo Modelo’s parent company Anheuser-Busch InBev explained in a short video presenting the campaign that the beverage industry produces over 15 million tonnes of plastic packaging every year, much of which ends up in the world’s oceans, harming plant and animal life.
Ranero pointed out that although other solutions have been tested to eliminate the plastic rings, alternatives inevitably use other materials that also generate waste. To bypass the problem, Corona’s new cans use no packaging to hold them together.
Instead, the company redesigned the cans themselves so that the top of each can screws into the bottom of another, creating a stackable tower of up to 10 beer cans. Ranero added that because of the portable nature of the interlocking cans, it won’t be necessary to use plastic bags to carry them.
Corona brand director Clarissa Pantoja said the company hopes not only to eliminate its own use of plastic, but to revolutionize the entire beverage industry’s approach to packaging. She said Corona will make its blueprints for the interlocking cans open source so that other companies can also reduce their impact on the environment.
The new Fit Packs are not Corona’s first attempt to scale back its environmental footprint. Earlier this month, the brand launched Desplastifícate (Deplasticize),a campaign that seeks to clean two million square meters of beach this summer in 23 countries.
In another campaign launched in early June, the company teamed up with the environmental organization Parley for the Oceans for the campaign Corona Better World. Consumers in Mexico, the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Italy, Spain and Brazil will be able to trade in three empty PET plastic bottles for one bottle of beer.
Additionally, Corona will clean a square meter of beach for every six-pack sold of a limited edition campaign beer bottled especially for the initiative.
Last year, the brewer tried replacing the plastic in the six-pack rings with a biodegradable product. A pilot program was run in Tulum, Quintana Roo, also in partnership with Parley for the Oceans.