AEROSOL EUROPE: Crown offers innovative packaging solutions for a wide range of markets. Which markets are you active in?
Véronique Curulla: Crown is the world’s leading producer of metal packaging for the food, beverage, personal care, household and luxury sectors. Touching the lives of billions of people around the world every single day, Crown’s initiatives remain focused on delivering innovation that responds directly to the needs of consumers and brand owners. For the aerosol sector, CROWN Aerosols & Speciality Packaging Europe has been active in a number of markets for many years, from food to household lubricants. Our main focus recently has been on the beauty and cosmetics sector, where we have worked, and continue to work, in partnership with brands to enable their products to attract consumer attention on retail shelves.
AEROSOL EUROPE: What does your corporate slogan “Brand-Building Packaging” illustrate?
Véronique Curulla: A strong brand is essential to driving sales in every market that we serve. Crown offers our customers a powerful combination of innovation, efficiency and speed-to-market; a blend that is key to building their brands with consumers. This is more than a tagline: it is a very real reflection of the value we provide to our customers worldwide. At every level of our company, we are committed to helping our customers, regionally and globally, launch new products, refresh and strengthen existing brands, streamline packaging operations and logistics, and get to market more efficiently.
AEROSOL EUROPE: There is a trend towards better shapes and designs of aerosol cans. How important is this for your aerosol products?
Véronique Curulla: Design is critical, and again comes back to shelf appeal. If we take hairspray as an example, the choices are extensive, so brands need to ensure that they have a point of difference. It has been shown that consumers are far more likely to buy a product once they have it in their hands, therefore brands must look to give them a reason to pick it up. Whether this is a tactile finish to the decoration, or a new and exciting shape that is away from the mainstream, having a unique element will help a brand to stand out.
AEROSOL EUROPE: Are there any examples for innovations lately regarding aerosol products at Crown?
Véronique Curulla: Innovation in the aerosol industry is driven by performance and economics, so we are constantly looking at ways to add value and benefits for our customers. One of the ways we look to do this is through lightweighting our products as much as possible without reducing the effectiveness or quality of the finished containers.
The design of these containers is, again, of paramount importance and Crown has developed a wide range of printing options to ensure maximum impact. Our design teams work with customers to help achieve the best possible finish – be it a gloss, matt or soft touch to provide a tactile and attractive effect.
AEROSOL EUROPE: Sustainability is a key word in your company’s policy. Could you give an idea of how the issue of sustainability is implemented within Crown?
Véronique Curulla: Sustainability is at the heart of everything we do, as our primary product – the can – embodies this entirely. Metal packaging is not only an extremely efficient packaging format, it is also infinitely recyclable – meaning that no matter how many times a container is recycled, it will not lose any of its original properties. In other words, metal is a permanent material that can contribute hugely to the development of a circular economy. Crown is an active supporter of the Metal Recycles Forever™ campaign, which aims to promote the use of metal packaging and to raise awareness of its green credentials in Europe. We have also just launched our third Sustainability Report which underlines Crown’s continued advancement in the economic, environmental and social dimensions of sustainability.
To find out more please visit: www.crowncork.com/about-crown/sustainability
AEROSOL EUROPE: We are aware that Crown has implemented a Quality Management System as well. Could you say a few words about it?
Véronique Curulla: Of course. Quality First is a global program that is implemented throughout Crown. It is part of our World-Class Performance (WCP) program towards excellence. Our WCP is a rigorous, structured strategy built on a commitment to continuous improvement and designed to raise our performance standards to the highest level in every area. From production line equipment to the experienced and talented staff we employ, we actively strive for and contribute to continuous improvement, maintaining a focus on customer satisfaction through all of our product and process quality.
AEROSOL EUROPE: Customer satisfaction is Crown’s highest priority. How do you achieve this goal?
Véronique Curulla: We strive to achieve this by working closely in partnership with our customers, building solid relationships through listening to their needs and developing solutions that will fulfil their requirements. We have specialist in-house teams across several sectors, ready to contribute to projects no matter how large or small. In addition, our supply chains are incredibly strong, allowing us to offer short lead times and to turn projects around quickly if necessary.
AEROSOL EUROPE: Is there any trend in the aerosol industry you could tell us about?
Véronique Curulla: There is a wide range of solutions available in the market place – and Crown creates packaging that can cater to various shapes and sizes. We are actively seeing more products – especially within the food industry – take advantage of the dispensing ease and cleanliness of aerosols. We have also seen an increase in smaller sized containers within the industry – compressed aerosols for example. Consumers are seeking more convenient products to fit better with their increasingly busy and mobile lifestyles.
AEROSOL EUROPE: What are your goals for the near future, especially regarding the aerosol industry?
Véronique Curulla: Our immediate goals are to raise awareness of the benefits of metal packaging within the aerosols market, highlighting the inherent benefits both from a practical and a sustainability aspect. As I mentioned, metal is an infinitely recyclable, permanent material, which requires less virgin material in its production as time goes by – ultimately saving energy and reducing CO2 emissions. This, coupled with its ability to be shaped in various ways and decorated with a wide variety of techniques, makes it the obvious choice for brands. For all our European operations, our production is contained within the region, easing supply chain management issues without being detrimental to the overall quality of the product.
AEROSOL EUROPE: In your opinion what challenges does our industry face in the future?
Véronique Curulla: Sustainability and the care of the environment is the ongoing challenge for the packaging industry as a whole – whatever substrate you happen to be working with. For Crown, we are dedicated to increasing already impressive worldwide recycling rates for metal aerosols and to promoting metal’s use as a packaging material within the wider Circular Economy.