A ‘Coffee Machine’ for Babies
In Switzerland, Nestlé has launched a nutrition system for infants and toddlers called BabyNes, which consists of a machine (similar to one-cup coffee machines) and a range of single-serve formulas. The single-serve portions are sealed in capsules, used in the proprietary BabyNes machine, which recognizes each capsule and prepares the bottle with precisely the right dosage and temperature, at the push of a button, in less than one minute. BabyNes offers single-serve formulas for infants and young children up to the age of three years. The composition of the six consecutive formulas meets the evolving nutritional needs in the first three years of life: four formulas in the first year, and one formula for each of the following two years. The customized composition of these products is tailored to suit the growth pattern in early life and the baby’s changing nutritional needs, while taking into account the steady introduction of solid food into the infant’s diet.

Packaging Supports Home Gardens
In the spring, Kraft Foods, Northfield, Ill., and its Triscuit Crackers brand joined with non-profit Urban Farming to unveil plans for 65 community-based home farms in 20 U.S. cities in 2011, including five home farms to be grown at low-income housing subsidiaries. These farms, located in urban areas, will provide local residents with greater access to more nutritious and healthier foods, consistent with the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development mission of creating more sustainable and diverse communities. “We want to inspire Americans across the country to join the ‘Home Farming’ movement,” said Jim Low, Senior Director of Marketing for Triscuit at Kraft Foods. “From backyards to balconies, or in community plots, everyone can become involved in home farming and discover the simple joy of growing their own food.”

As part of its effort, Kraft attached plantable basil and dill herb seed cards to 8 million boxes of Original and Reduced Fat Triscuit Crackers. The side panel of the limited-edition carton provides 5-step instructions on how to plant and grow the seeds.

QR Code on Cola Cans
Ball Packaging Europe,
Ratingen, Germany, and Coca-Cola, Atlanta, have partnered to make the beverage can a versatile accessory for young lifestyles. The latest 25-cl cans create a mobile link between music and refreshment. In the Coke Sound Up campaign, cans printed with a QR code take smart phones straight to the Coke Music Portal. “The cans appeal to consumers through multiple senses at the same time—taste, hearing, and sight—for an interactive multimedia fresh-up,” said Gerlof Toenhake, chief of marketing at Ball Packaging.

The new 25-cl sleek can adds to the sense of mobility with its handy format, answering a need for refreshment that is easy to carry. Coca-Cola successfully launched the new small beverage cans last year, partly with sampling campaigns. Coca-Cola’s sales figures for the past year show how the sleek can fills a gap in the market. Instead of denting sales of 0.5-liter PET bottles and 33-cl cans, the new cans added to the total sales volume.