Coors Sticks with Glass

Golden, Colo.-based Coors Brewing Co. has rejected plans to expand polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottle manufacturing to a wider audience. Instead, it will stick with its current strategy of using PET bottles only for special events at stadiums and other venues, says Joseph Bussey, Coors project manager.

The decision was based largely on economics and environmental concerns. "It is significantly difficult to be in PET," Bussey said in an interview at Nova-Pack Americas earlier this year."[PET] isn't in our plans at Coors, and I don't think that will change any time soon."

Glass bottles are significantly less expensive to produce than PET. Virgin recycling also costs less, and collecting PET bottles for recycling has been a major concern, Bussey adds.

Meantime, Milwaukee-based Miller Brewing Co. and St. Louis-based Anheuser-Busch Inc. have rolled out PET bottle sales in a limited number of retail stores and hope to grow their markets for the product.

"Until recycling is proven to work and be cost-effective," Bussey says, "we can't consider it for a million-plus-bottle product rollout."