Maxwell House Coffee Case Study
It's a concept and strategy developed by Sonoco in 2002 to deliver to its customers complete and customized packaging solutions and turn-key management capabilities.
Today, it is the Company’s ability to successfully execute the total packaging solutions strategy — offering a full range of packaging supply chain products and services from creation to reclamation — that separates Sonoco from its packaging peers.
Delivering on the Total Solutions Commitment
Perhaps the best example of Sonoco’s ability to deliver on its “total solutions” commitment occurred when Kraft Foods decided to explore packaging alternatives to the metal cans it was using for the Maxwell House brand coffee. Kraft Foods turned to Sonoco, the world’s largest producer of rigid paperboard cans, and a company that has provided innovative packaging solutions to leading brands around the world since 1899.
Dedicated, Diverse Teams
For the Maxwell House project, Sonoco assembled a dedicated team of employees from various divisions within the Company to collaborate on the venture. For more than two years, this team worked to develop a package that could successfully meet the cost objectives and performance expectations of Kraft Foods. The result is a high-performance rigid paperboard can, designed and manufactured specifically for Kraft Foods, that represents the next generation of coffee packaging. This new Maxwell House container debuted on store shelves in 2009.
Because of its diverse total solutions portfolio, Sonoco was able to make all six components for the new Maxwell House package.
- The can is spiral-wound from 100% recycled paperboard and includes a high-barrier liner that helps deliver great tasting coffee cup after cup.
- Sonoco’s patented Ultraseal® membrane end is used for the container’s opening.
- Developed for non-processed applications like coffee, the flexible end creates a hermetic seal and features a unique valve that releases built-up pressure that can occur in coffee packaging.
- The can’s overcap is made using Sonoco’s patent pending Sealclick® plastic closure technology, which produces a lid for the can that tightly reseals—with an audible snap—by simply applying pressure using both thumbs. Kraft Foods calls this new overcap its “Flavor Lock Lid.”
- Finally, to help differentiate the look of the new Maxwell House can, Sonoco uses its state-of-the-art gravure cylinder engraving operations and rotogravure presses to create a unique and vibrant label. The smooth surface of the can also provides superior billboarding for the newly created Maxwell House graphics.