The most common container in the soft drink market today in South Africa is the plastic bottle, or more specifically, the polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottle.
PET is the type of plastic resin, a form of polyester labelled with the code on or near the bottom of the bottles or containers
PET is made out of Ethylene and Para xylene. Their derivatives (ethylene glycol and terephthalic acid) are made to react at high temperature and high pressure to obtain amorphous PET. The resin is then crystallised and polymerised to to increase its molecular weight and its viscosity. The resulting resin is the raw material used to make containers.
The PET container is recognisable as the transparent, rigid container used to package bottled water, carbonated soft drinks (CSD’s), sports drinks, water, household cleaners and food trays. It is a popular package for food and non-food products.
PET is tough and resilient and lends itself to recycling. Facilitation of recycling has become international best practice for plastic bottle manufacturers. A distinctive recycling logo is stamped onto the base of the material.
This shows that the manufacturer has demonstrated sensitivity to environmental concerns by creating packaging products that lend themselves to recovery and recycling.
In markets with high levels of environmental awareness, shoppers regard such identification as reassurance that they are buying products manufactured by socially responsible business