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Innovative cork-glass wine solution launched

The two global leaders in wine packaging, Amorim and O-I, announced today at Vinexpo the launch of Helix, an innovative cork-glass wine packaging solution for the popular premium, fast turnaround still wine segment.

The result of a four-year partnership between Amorim and O-I and a joint R&D investment of around five million euros, the development of Helix drew on both companies’ innovation capabilities and expertise in serving global wine markets, gained from a heritage that stretches back over a century.

“The future of innovation is through collaboration,” said O-I European president Erik Bouts. “Helix is a proven example of what can be achieved for consumers and the wine trade when the world’s leading companies in glass packaging and cork work together.”

The new ‘twist to open’ concept combines an ergonomically-designed stopper made from proven micro-conglomeratecork and a glass bottle with an internal thread finish in the neck, creating a high performing and sophisticated wine packaging solution. Helix combines all the benefits of cork and glass – quality, sustainability and premium image with user-friendly, re-sealable convenience.

It can be quickly and easily implemented by wineries with only a minor (10 minute) height and orientation adjustment to existing filling lines.

“Helix meets consumers’ growing desire for sustainability and quality, while delivering the brand building and premium image packaging wineries rely upon”, added Antonio Amorim, chairman and CEO of Amorim. “We are delighted to offer the market not only a 100% renewable, modern product, but also a solution that enhances the wine drinking experience through opening and resealing convenience.”

 In extensive testing conducted by Amorim and O-I, wine packaged in Helix glass bottles with cork stoppers showed no alteration in terms of taste, aroma or colour. 
As part of the development process, market research in France, UK, US and China revealed great consumer acceptance of Helix for fast turnaround and popular premium wines. In addition, consumers also appreciated retaining the festive ‘pop’ associated with opening a bottle of wine.
The threads inside the neck of the glass bottle interact with the cork's natural elasticity to create matching grooves. The grooves are already in the pre-shaped cork but not visible until after insertion in the bottle.
It is surprisingly easy to twist out of the bottle and reseal yet it forms a perfect leak-free seal of a regular cork closure (tried and tested by
Helix tests included intensive extraction and re-insertion, long term storage (26 month trial) and accelerated ageing (30 days at 35 degs C horizontal strorage).

17 June 2013 - Felicity Murray