Rutgers University: Gabriel Reis, Alvin Naduparambil, Amy Terranova

According to data from Ocean Conservancy, 8 million metric tons of plastic enter our world’s oceans each year. The Coca-Cola Company is a founding member of Ocean Conservancy’s Trash Free Seas Alliance®, whose goal is to one day eliminate ocean trash entirely. This means that the world is looking to them to lead the charge on reducing the use of single-use plastics. However, Coca-Cola’s juice boxes and pouches currently utilize single-use plastic straws that too often end up in the ocean.

Introducing Eco-Sip: a new angle on juice boxes. Our team designed an innovative new juice box that eliminates the need for a straw. The top of the box is slanted to create a spout shape for easy drinkability. To access the beverage, consumers will simply pull a perforated tear tab at the top of the spout, which will open the box. Then, all the consumer needs to do is gently squeeze the opening they have created to form the spout, and drink! This design is ergonomic, forming an easy and comfortable opening out of which to drink. The spout shape also gives the same spill resistant characteristics of the original straw design, since the consumer’s mouth covers the hole, which is great for kids of all ages. The tear tab not only provides tamper evidence, but also allows for FFP that is so easy to open that a child will be able to use it without requiring adult supervision.

And it’s not just the environment that will benefit from the elimination of a straw from juice boxes. Consumer testing shows that consumers struggle with the external glued-on straw in many ways. Firstly, the straw is frequently lost or damaged, causing consumers to have no feasible way to get at the juice inside the carton. Additionally, small children often do not have the fine motor skills required to poke a straw through the small opening, so an adult must assist them. Eco-Sip is the answer to both of these buyer gripes.

The graphics on the Eco-Sip are very similar to the original Minute Maid juice box. We wanted to keep the iconic brand easily recognizable on shelves, even with the new shape. The only major changes are on the top of the carton, where a dotted line is printed along the tear tab to make opening the package intuitive. Also, the instruction “squeeze here” was printed at the top, with arrows pointing to the sides of the spout opening, to make the opening process as clear as possible.

Now made with responsibly-sourced board, our Eco-Sip Minute Maid juice box design fully embraces sustainability. Future generations will thank Coca-Cola for doing its part to combat the ever-growing environmental issues our planet faces every day, and customers will appreciate having a product that is easy to use.