Striving to reduce its carbon footprint, Champagne Telmont is working with French glassmaker Verallia to reduce the weight of its bottles by 35g. The first Champagne to launch in this new bottle could hit the market in 2025.
Champagne Telmont, which was acquired by Rémy Cointreau in 2020, is working on reducing the weight of its Champagne bottles from 835g to 800g in partnership with glassmaker Verallia. “Our decision to test a lighter weight Champagne bottle is driven by our desire to push the boundaries of the status quo and continually ask ourselves what more we can do to reduce our impact,” Champagne Telmont President Ludovic du Plessis tells Luxe Packaging Insight.
With glass accounting for around 20% of Telmont’s carbon emissions (glass manufacturing and transport), “reducing the weight of a bottle to 800g represents a 4.2% reduction per bottle, which could represent 8,000 fewer equivalent tons of CO2 emissions should all of the Champagne region follow suit,” he says.
The bottle's appearance and shape will remain largely unchanged, although the radius of the shoulder and the area made available for labeling have both been slightly altered, according to du Plessis. Verallia adds that creating a lighter bottle while maintaining the design and dimensions of the current 835g standard Champagne bottle was tricky, as was ensuring a homogenous distribution of the glass during production.
Before the bottle hits the market – the launch is slated for 2025 with Telmont Réserve Brut – tests are needed to guarantee its resistance during the bottling and transport phases; Champagne bottles need to withstand much higher pressure of around 6kg per square centimeter. “The lighter-weight bottles therefore need to be tested to withstand this pressure over time with 35g less glass weight,” the Champagne maker says. Tests have begun on a batch of 3,000 bottles during the tirage. Over a six-month period, a representative sample will be monitored and analyzed.
The creation of this lightweighted bottle is the latest step in Champagne Telmont’s sustainable packaging initiatives. The brand stopped using transparent virgin glass bottles in 2021, and now opts for green bottles with 85% recycled content. Du Plessis says that work is underway with its partner glassmakers to further increase the amount of recycled glass used. "In terms of our glass procurement, we favor local production and the bottles are transported to our Telmont site using a local transport company with biofuel trucks,” he adds. The Champagne purveyor also took the step to eliminate all secondary packaging, including gift boxes, as of June last year.
As this new 800g bottle is not yet the standard for Champagne, it remains more costly given to the low volumes involved.