Soft drink companies-The thought process of stocking shelves

Which soft drink company 1st had the idea of stocking 12 pack carry handle side down? It would be so much easier for customers to reach down, grab the carry handle and slam dunk that purchase in their basket. Ever wonder why you have to turn that 12 pack over to find the handle, then cram your fingers into the handle, then pick it up to carry it to your basket. There must be universal training for their current procedures since ALL the companies stock the same way. Am I the only one who can’t think of a single reason why they do this?

Not only that, but some brands (like Sierra Mist) slowly leak when the cans are stored upside-down or sideways. (I have written to them about it.) What is so difficult with having the cans upright, with the carry handle on top?

If the cans are stored on their side they will be more likely to suffer damage on the sides of the can from knocks and bumps, and end up with damaged cans.

As to why the manufacturers don’t make the packs with handles on the sides, have you ever tried to stack, or unload by hand a pallet of 100 packs of soft drink? It makes the manual handling a lot easier if the handle is on the top of pack.

The fridge pack style 12 packs made everything easier for me. My hands are large enough to fit around either side of them so I rarely use handles on 12 packs anymore.

If the handle is on the top where the top of the cans are it is more difficult to pop the handle in to be able to use it. Most manufacturers opt to put the handles on the sides where the handle has room to bend in due to the curvature of the cans.

This is pretty much it. The handle is on the “side” because there’s room between cans for the handle to pop in and your fingers to fit. Cans are very sturdy when stacked upright, but are very prone to bursting if stacked sideways, so the cases are stocked in a way that puts the cans upright… and the handle’s location then is on the side.

Of course, if the soft drink companies are given the shelf space, they can actually stock the cases with the large-width handle side facing out toward the customer, instead of the narrow end, which makes getting a case far more easy. Poke fingers into the handle of the topmost case and slide off.

Drinks cans leak? I’ve never come across that. Surely if they can leak liquid, the drink would go flat in short order, whichever way up they were kept?

I don’t know why but I can pretty much guarantee you there IS a reason if it’s being done.

Business spend time and money to research these things. Of course that doesn’t mean they get it right? But there is always a reason, be it good or not.

The soft drink companies have been “lightweighting” their containers (plastic, too, though the link is about aluminum) for some time now, and have finally reached the point that the containers can no longer effectively contain the pressure of the carbonation inside them, as far as I can tell. That’s why they started putting “use by” dates on soft drinks a few years ago. They realized that if the cans/bottles sit around for too long, they’ll go flat.

Now if you can stop them from setting shelves over them that just clear the cases this would help. They have just filled the shelf and there is one quarter inch space between the case and the shelf with no space on the sides. How do you remove the first case? Go to the end of the isle and start sliding them all sideways a couple inches, so there is a crack large enough to get two fingers along the side? Use a gaff hook? Super glue the front of a case to a can of soup and pull on the can?

I"m confused. Do they still make a 12-pack that isn’t a fridge pack?

A fridge pack has the cans oriented so that they’ll roll forward as you remove drinks from the box, therefore the handle is on the top (fitting with the curvature of the can), not the sides.

Referring to an earlier post: The people who stock the fridge packs at the stores I go to don’t pop the little handles in the cardboard. They only time they get popped is if I pop them to help carry a couple of them to the checkout when I don’t have a basket.

One exception that I’ve noticed is that the Wal-Marts here don’t sell fridge packs, they have a 20 pack, and in that case, they sit flat so that the cans are all standing upright in the box. I don’t buy those often enough to notice where the handles are located.

Around me Coke and Pepsi products use the fridge pack design. Polar and store brands still tend to be in the classic 12 pack.

The shelves are stocked with the top of the cans to the top. The vendors do this because the cans are strongest upright so the can stack more product on top of them without issue. The compliant in this thread is you have to flip the case on its side(can tops to the left or right) to access the handles.

Not only do they leak, they also evaporate. Some of the cans were actually empty. This has happened to me only with Sierra Mist . . . yet most of the cans were ok.

That’s why they call it ‘Sierra Mist’. :slight_smile:

Aluminum cans so thin that liquid evaporates through them? I’ve never heard of this before. Maybe they aren’t sealing them well?

I don’t trust the “handle” in one of those fridge packs of pop. I’ve seen the box come apart a few times when a cashier tried to stick her fingers in and lift the box.

Since I have a reasonably good grip I just grab the box and pick it up without sticking my fingers in. Much less likely to come apart that way.

It’s a sealing issue. Aluminum itself is airtight when you’re talking about sheets of it, but there are joints in a can.

Often, the gap is at the mouth of the can where the tab is; since that part is mean to open anyway, it’s a natural weak point. But the welds all the way around the top can sometimes leak.

I have also seen cans that leaked through pin-sized holes in the sides. I’m not sure whether these are a manufacturing defect or some kind of damage from shipment and stocking.

Coca-Cola products:
The aluminum is extremely thin and I’ve actually touched the cans against something metal while filling the coke machine at my office and had them spring a leak. They also tend to get pinholes in them if you drop the can, and that pinhole can have the carbonated drink shoot all the way up to the 12 ft. ceiling.

Pepsi products:
I used to be a Pepsi drinker and when Pepsi redesigned their cans about 15-20 years ago, I saved one of the unopened old cans, put it up on a shelf and didn’t touch it for about 6 months. One day, while dusting, I picked up the can and it was completely empty. There wasn’t any evidence of any leaks or osmosis…there was no sticky residue where the can had sat, the can was clean, and the can even felt pressurized. I didn’t try to squeeze it hard because I didn’t want to crush it, but it didn’t behave like an open empty can would.

Sierra Mist is a Pepsi product and maybe it has the same magical properties as Pepsi.

Possibly a DRM issue. Your single-use license for that can of pop expired.

What would evidence of osmosis look like? :slight_smile:

Oddly enough, the soft drink companies had nothing to do with it.

The 6x2 “fridge pack” was designed by the people who make aluminum. Alcoa wanted to increase the sale of aluminum cans, so they did a bunch of research and created the long skinny package that fits into your fridge more easily than the “suitcase” style 4x3 boxes. Seems like those things have been around forever, but it’s only been seven years since they were developed.

In the spirit of true Doperdom, please repeat this last experiment outside and tell us just how far the soda will shoot when unencumbered by ceilings. Mentos are optional.