The Science of a Superior ​​​Drinking Experience

The Science of a Superior ​​​Drinking Experience

It all comes down to the pack​​age’s form, fit and flow

We’ve all been there: You arrive at the office in the morning and open your work bag, only to find your important papers and laptop are covered in cold coffee, thanks to a leaky bottle. You’re not sure what’s worse – the ruined papers and soaked laptop or the lost coffee.

And what about trying to take a sip from your water bottle while briskly walking to your next meeting? Surely you’ve felt self-conscious when you grab a seat and notice the water dribble down the front of your shirt. “It’s water – not sweat – I swear.”

Consumers, especially “always on” millennials, need a beverage container that can keep up with their on-the-go demands. One that not only enables them to easily – and cleanly – quench their thirst and energize them while on the move, but one that can also stay securely sealed when the package moves from hand to bag. ​

​​When it comes to on-the-go beverage packaging, the holy grail does exist – a container built on the science of the superior drinking experience.

Deconstructing the Drinking Experience

Using ergonomics – “the applied science of structural packaging design, intended to maximize effectiveness and consumer convenience by reducing frustration and discomfort”1  – Tetra Pak analyzed the package characteristics needed to create the ultimate drinking experience.

​Researchers conducted in-depth consumer experiments and ethnographic research to study the particular methods people use to consume beverages on the go.

Three primary drinking approaches were discovered:

​While the method is often dependent on the category of the beverage, its viscosity and how it fulfills consumers’ needs at particular times of day, the research found the most frequent approach is the “pull” mode.

Different sipping characteristics associated with the particular reasons why consumers drink a beverage were also revealed:

 Reason fo​r Dri​nking

 ​Sip Characteristics


 Savor, taste, chew​​


 ​Sip or take in a small shot


 ​Take one or a few sips at a time


 ​Gulp in as much as possible

Tetra Pak used this information as a guide when experimenting with the three foundational elements of the perfect beverage package and its opening: form, fit and flow.

Form considers the physical architecture of the closure, keeping in mind the contours of the human face and how to avoid nose obstruction.

Fit addresses the physical shape of the opening of the container, to ensure it fits the mouth easily for better comfort and sensory appeal.

Flow takes into account the area that lets the product out and what hole diameter enables an easier “pull” from the container.

Formfitting​ to Ensure Optimal Flow​​

Drinking from a champagne flute is a challenge for most – the nose, no matter how small, gets in the way every single time. Like glassware, the form of a beverage package is an important factor in delivering the superior drinking experience.

​Tetra Pak tested a variety of package shapes to optimally match form to facial geometry. Characteristics of obstacle avoidance were analyzed, such as nose interference, how far back a consumer has to tilt his or her head to drain the container, and how much of the face the container covers while sipping.

​​Matching form to fit required studying the physics behind the act of drinking, to discover the optimal surface and “hook” size for lip contact that enables an easy pull. 

​Finally, the flow of the beverage into the mouth, which is often determined by the size of the opening, was another leading factor in determining how comfortable and effortless the drinking experience could be. Tetra Pak conducted consumer testing of a variety of beverages in containers with nine different spout diameters to discover the optimal opening size that enabled the most comfortable pull.

Ready to Go

The result was the Tetra Prisma® Aseptic 500 Edge with DreamCap™, a package optimized for facial geometry with a one-step, resealable screw cap that delivers these advantages:

  • Total portability
  • Ideal opening made for lips
  • Optimal flow
  • Secure seal and reseal
  • Comfortable fit in hand

No more dribbles down the shirt or soggy papers in a bag. The ergonomically designed Tetra Prisma® Aseptic 500 Edge with DreamCap™ offers the ultimate drinking experience on the go.