A new canvas for cans
by Steve Oakey
Our oceans are filling up with plastic bottles and there is a massive push to raise awareness and find solutions to this global problem. One solution is starting to appear on our retail shelves in the form of canned drinking water. It seems to be a new trend and one that ’can’ only grow.
CanOwater are one of the first companies who intend to change the way we consume water. Highly sustainable, recyclable and resealable, their cans are made of up to 70% recycled material. They say the aluminium can is the only packaging that more than covers its recycling cost and 75% of all aluminium ever produced since 1888 is still in current use* [and therefore not in the sea].
The Natural History Museum has recently announced that they will be stocking Life Water cans, the UK’s first zero-plastic canned water, available later in 2018.
From a graphic design perspective it’s really interesting to see the clean, pure simple graphic language of this virgin market – totally driven by the desire to communicate the full environmental benefits. It also still seems to be in the mind set of designing an a clear plastic surface.
Once people understand that drinking water from a can is far better for the environment, we will not need to communicate that message anymore. This is when I believe the design language will quickly change and the water can could become one of the new great canvases for design – similar to current creativity abundant on craft beer cans.
Vedette [Belgian beer brand] are the first example I’ve seen that are already pushing the creative boundaries. They have created Vedette Water 0.00%. This canned water comes with the statement… “The main ingredient of our beers, packaged separately for your enjoyment”. Check out their water brewing process.
Images from canowater.com, life-water.co.uk and vedette.com. *Stats from canowater.com