Filling on Demand

Fast changing market trends and consumer behaviors

Online retail and the rapidly growing delivery services in cities have changed consumer behavior. The young generation of digital natives in particular is focusing on individuality!

The consumer selects his goods individually using digital media. He does not have to go to a store or observe any opening hours. The Internet is open day and night.

In addition to the endless choices offered by online marketplaces and delivery services, consumers want personalized products that are made specifically for them. They are also willing to spend more money for this.

Individualization has arrived in the beverage industry

The market’s drive for more individualization has also reached the beverage industry. New beverage concepts are springing up every day. The range of beverages is growing almost endlessly. In particular, the trends toward more wellness, health, and life style seem to be especially attractive.

Consumers want 24-hour availability and an almost gigantic selection, delivered in the shortest possible time. The many online retailers and delivery services are trying to meet this trend. 

The optimal level of customisation is not available

But the current offer of customisation is limited to a predefined and limited selection of beverages that do not fully meet the consumer’s wishes. Efforts to perfect customisation currently end in solutions that consumers mix themselves, for example by adding powders or concentrates such as syrup. An optimal homogenisation of a beverage is not achieved by this. Especially for high-quality beverage solutions, a machine filling solution is needed.

Problem of the bottlers and dealers

More and more beverage line manufacturers and bottlers are addressing the question: „Can very small batches down to batch size 1 be economically realized in a bottling line?“ This question has not been answered to this day. On the contrary. As the product range becomes ever larger and the batch sizes smaller, the bottlers‘ efficiency and plant utilization continue to plummet. The bottlers invested in the past millions of dollar in filling lines which produce big volumes in shorter times but the market trend is different. 

Bottlers who want to participate in product growth run the risk of spending more time cleaning and converting than bottling. There are analyses that show that it is not uncommon for pure filling time to account for only 45% of the available time when the product portfolio is diverse. At the same time, the consumption of resources such as water and chemicals is growing rapidly. It is not uncommon for a rinsing process of a filling line to require 6,000 litres of water. There are also flavours that are so penetrating that all cleaning processes are insufficient and even the seals have to be replaced.

The rapidly growing number of beverage products is not only a challenge for bottlers, but also for retailers. No matter whether wholesaler, delivery service, beverage market or supermarket. Storage space is scarce and expensive and the logistics costs are enormous. 

The customer promise to deliver a large selection in ever shorter time escalates the issue enormously.

Circular economy in the beverage industry

Moreover, the circular economy for beverages is anything but sustainable. While drinks in glass bottles, for example, generate added value for the consumer, the return of empty bottles to the bottling plant is an ecological disaster.

The situation for the circular economy is exacerbated by the increasing individualisation of beverage bottles by bottlers. Whereas in the past a standard glass bottle from the GDB was used by all mineral water producers in Germany and could be returned to every well, an individual bottle must be returned to the respective bottler.

The bottlers hope that this marketing measure will attract more attention to their product on the shelves and ensure that there are enough empties during bottleneck periods. 

It’s time for a real disruption 

If one is aware of the previously mentioned problems in the entire logistics chain, the time is ripe for a real disruption in the beverage industry.

KTW Technology has dedicated itself to precisely these issues. 

What does a near-ideal solution look like?

We believe that there has to be a solution for the bottlers and a solution for the retailers.

The bottler must be put in a position to follow the market trend without having to accept any loss of efficiency and to operate sustainably.

The retailer must be relieved of logistics costs and largely fulfil the customer’s desire for individualisation.

KTW´s solutions to disruptive the beverage industry

The KTW team uses space technology to develop efficient and sustainable solutions for industry. In addition to its products to promote the energy turnaround ( hydrogen and energy saving ), KTW has developed solutions for both, beverage bottlers and beverage retailers. 

Disruption Level 1

In disruption level 1, bottlers are enabled to eliminate flavours and additives from the main filling process and to dose them separately before or after the main filling process using a unique and retrofittable technology, the High Speed Pression Dosing system.

This change in the filling process enables the bottler to participate in small batch product growth without loss of efficiency. He has fewer cleaning processes, no flavour carry-over and a high degree of flexibility and less Capital Expenditures. The solution meets the sustainability aspect through less energy, water and chemical consumption.

This flexibility and economically filling of small lot sizes is known in the Beverage industry as „Bottling on Demand“ or „Filling on Demand“.

Disruption Level 2

However, KTW’s strategy envisages a much more far-reaching change in the bottling of beverages. A real disruption is taking place in which an entire market is being replaced or „smashed“ by a rapidly growing innovation.

For this reason, KTW has developed a concept with a customer in which the entire logistics process and the complex warehousing up to and at the retailer are greatly simplified for certain types of beverages.

Small and flexible dosing lines are operated, for example, in the warehouses of the dealers themselves or by the KTW team. Here, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages with a variety of flavours and additives can be filled homogeneously and delivered to the customer, who composes his product via mobile app, in the shortest possible time. The current project provides for the dosing of 150 flavours in alcohol. 

In further expansion stages, KTW Technology flexibilizes its model to the extent that the dealer can choose between in-house operation, purchase as equipment as a service, or third-party operation by KTW personnel.

The advantages for the dealers and the circular economy are enormous. Besides the aspect that they can build their own brand with very individual beverages, they generate a competitive advantage and a drastic cost reduction in logistics. In addition, empties for these beverages no longer have to be returned to the bottler for refilling, which nature and the climate will thank us for.

If you are interested to learn more about this real disruption in the beverage industry, please contact us under info@ktwtechnology.de 

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