Garçon Wines' 10-pack only takes up the space of four regular wine bottles, and the benefits are staggering.

By Mike Pomranz
March 01, 2019

In 2016, London-based Garçon Wines released what was billed as the world’s first flat bottle of wine. The concept was simple and practical: Create a flat bottle that could allow wine to be delivered through a mail slot, and make it plastic so it wouldn’t break when it hit the ground. Full disclosure: After covering the bottle, Garçon Wines sent me a sample. Indeed, the package slipped right through my letterbox, the bottle looked super cool (though you do have to be careful not to tip it over!), and the wine inside was surprisingly exquisite. Overall, I was impressed, and I am not the only one: Last year, Garçon Wines won a major award for packaging innovation.

Courtesy of Garçon Wines

But though the desire to deliver wine through a mail slot might have been Garçon Wines’ inspiration, its flat, 100-percent post-consumer recycled PET bottle has plenty of additional benefits. A more rectangular bottle takes up less space, and plastic isn’t just less likely to break; it’s also lighter than glass. As a result, these bottles aren’t just more convenient, they’re also both less expensive and more environmentally-friendly to ship. Now, Garçon Wines is hammering that point home with the launch of its new 10 Flat Bottle Case.

Garçon Wines suggests that this new ten-bottle package “will significantly cut carbon emissions and logistics costs from the supply chain of wine,” and the numbers clearly seem to back that up. The box fits ten flat bottles — which, for the record, are a full 750 milliliters each — in the same space as just four standard glass bottles. Additionally, Garçon Wines states that, compared to your typical case of six glass bottles, their 10 Flat Bottle Case is approximately 55 percent smaller in size.

But Garçon Wines’ ingenious tweaks go beyond simply flat and plastic: The company saved even more room by specifically designing additional bottles to slide into the neck space. Cases are arranged with “eight flat bottles packed vertically with two lying horizontally in the airspace around the bottlenecks, eliminating almost all unused airspace,” the brand stated. “This has been achievable as the Garçon Wines slimline bottle was specially designed so eight bottles in total width are the same length as one bottle tall and the width and depth of a single bottle is the same as the area around the bottleneck.” Who says you don’t need to pay attention in math class?!

Courtesy of Garçon Wines

Needless to say, the environmental impact this case could have on shipping is also eye-opening. “From a transport perspective and for a consignment of the same size, the 10 Flat Bottle Case would significantly reduce the need for HGVs (heavy good vehicles which take a standard 24 pallets) from 5 HGVs to just 2,” Garçon Wines claims. “Reducing the need from 5 to 2 HGVs has a direct, positive impact on the reduction in carbon emissions and costs by at least 60%.” And keep in mind, the switch from glass to plastic also eliminates plenty of extra packaging (and labor) necessary to prevent breakage.

“Current wine transit cases used to transport 6 or 12 bottles of wine are inefficient and ineffective resulting in unnecessarily costly logistics, excessive packaging, wasted resources and a grotesque carbon footprint,” explained Santiago Navarro, CEO & Co-Founder of Garçon Wines. “This is because the bottles being used are not fit for purpose in a 21st century world of e-commerce, complex supply chains, a global world, and most importantly, climate change.”

But Navarro also says his mission is about more than just wine itself. “Wine is a uniquely engaging product with a high emotional connection,” he continued. “It, therefore, provides a unique platform from where to communicate a change in the way we do things to help mitigate against a climate change catastrophe and create a more sustainable economy.”

Turns out flat wine bottles don’t just fit through your letterbox; they can also save the world.

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