Tetra Pak

Tetra Pak is a brand of beverage cartons, which are marketed by the same company coming from Sweden since the 1950s and spread worldwide have found particularly as packaging for milk. The brand name was a synonym for beverage cartons generally input in the German language.

The company prefers the spelling Tetra Pak, which forms Tetra Pak carton or are, however, generally used font use frequently. The headquarters of the Tetra Laval Group and the company Tetra Pak International is now in Pully near Lausanne in Switzerland. Tetra Pak employs 21,640 people and generated 2008 sales of 8.825 billion euros.

  • 5.1 Alternative concept foil bag


In 1943 it was the young chemist Erik Wallenberg, the engineer Harry Järund and the sales manager Erik Torudd able to develop a completely new packaging for milk - a cardboard box in the shape of a tetrahedron. Ideas for this was the Swede Ruben Rausing, whose company worked in the first three mentioned at that time. This should be crucial for the development of the company at that time novel form of the tetrahedron and the technology, because Rausing and Wallenberg had developed a new coating of paper with plastics and a special technique for sealing that takes into account the nature of the liquid to be packaged. On May 18, 1951, new packaging form came on the market. Depending on the product and manufacturers have these cartons on a different coating.

The name comes from the original tetrahedral shape to that accepted the package earlier production reasons: An already filled cardboard tube is clamped off each rotated 90 degrees, welded and cut. The form and the closing of the packaging have been changed since then. Were offered Tetra Paks for milk, fruit juice drinks and table wine in the form of a compact block with a volume- specific surface area. These so-called Tetra Brik packaging in the format of a brick until 1998 possessed of a perforation on one of the folded corners of the carton. After raising the perforated corner of the package could be opened by simply buckling at the perforation. This built-in into the box opening was in 1998 replaced by resealable openings from PE resin under the names " ReCap ", " SimplyPull " and "Simply twist". Tetra Pak also provides under the name " Tetra Top " to screw in which the entire package top is made of polyethylene. At the same time the packaging of some products were replaced in the traditional brick form of Tetra Brik with a square footprint, which are higher than the previous packaging and require a larger distance between the shelves in the fridge why.

Company Formation and Locations

In 1951 the company Tetra Pak emerged from the company Åkerlund & Rausing. It was founded by Erik Wallenberg and Ruben Rausing and has its headquarters in Lund, Sweden, as a corporation ( aktiebolag ).

Tetra Pak Germany has since 1965 based in Hochheim am Main with the holding company Tetra Pak GmbH & Co KG and Tetra Pak GmbH. Production originated in 1969 in Limburg an der Lahn and 1981 in Berlin. The production of milk cartons in Berlin to the end of 2013 (as of March 2013) moved to Limburg and the Berlin office will be closed.

Since 1973, the company operates its own research laboratory of Food Chemistry in Stuttgart, which is primarily used for quality control. For each location, a dedicated subsidiary.

The Tetra Pak brand

The Swedish brand "Tetra Pak " enjoys legal protection since 1951 mark by registered trademarks. The first word mark "Tetra Pak " was registered in Sweden in 1950 and is valid for various packaging products and packaging machines and beverage containers. The founder of the company already made ​​their mark in the early days the trademark for the now familiar term " Tetra Pak ". Other national and international trademark registrations followed.

The Tetra Pak brand is registered in favor of the Tetra Pak Group. In Germany, the word mark Tetra Pak since 1957 enjoys trademark protection. The Tetra Pak group not only protects their word marks, but also the appearance of their packaging by three-dimensional trade marks and designs. In addition, their logos and other trademarks are protected worldwide.

Overall, the Tetra Pak group 70 different brand families and its brand portfolio includes the world comprises more than 12,000 trademark registrations. As used by the company slogan "Protect what is good " was recognized by the Federal Patent Court as eligible for protection. The slogan is used worldwide in the Tetra Pak packaging.

Core business UHT milk

With the introduction of the first packing plant for aseptic filling of sterile milk in Switzerland in 1961 Tetra Pak 's breakthrough in Europe. Changing lifestyle habits had let rise alongside the usual pasteurized products the need for more durable long-life milk, so that an ever-growing production in the world was mapped out.

Alternative concept tube packing

Without long-term success tried dairies between 1960 and establish the 1990s tube packaging for fresh milk. This alternative to the beverage carton has not caught on with consumers, since hoses can be practically stored less than carton packaging. So always had a plastic container for open tubes are kept, a closure was not provided. However, critics emphasize the lower environmental impact of packaging tube, made ​​of pure plastic and easier to recycle than multilayer packaging materials such as Tetra Pak.

Children fruit juices, milk and cream

The mid-1960s learned the West German population Tetra Pak in his eponymous tetrahedral form (" Tetra Classic" ) know for Sunkist fruit juice beverages, whose production began on 26 May 1964. The shape allowed for a secure stand, the prefabricated Perforierungsloch and the stable straw, a drip-free drinking what looked many parents and children as an advantage. In addition, there was also the also tetrahedral 0.5 - lH - milk pack for the household.

In the GDR there were decades both milk drinks for school children as well as coffee cream ( condensed milk ) in tetrahedral packaging of the original filling technology. In addition there was stackable hexagonal plastic boxes, as they must be in tetrahedral stack in cuboid boxes.

Alternative concept foil bag

Due to an elaborate publicity campaign, the tube-like products by the name of Capri Sun have been popular since 1969. To compensate for the disadvantage of milk hose, had incorporated a Stützfalz, which ensured together with the composite construction aluminum thermoplastic film has a reasonably firm footing.

Further development

Worldwide sold Tetra Pak in 2002 about 98 billion packages of 56 billion liters of bottled products, achieving a turnover of nearly 7.5 billion euros.

Thanks to a successful advertising campaign with the slogan "Tetra Pak - Somehow clever" the company was able to enforce their packaging concept internationally. In 2003, she had offices in 165 countries with a total of nearly 21,000 employees. Only 62 percent of sales were to the dairy sector in which the Group has a market share of 85 percent.

In 2004, the advertising message focused particularly on the opacity and thus a decisive advantage over glass and foil packaging in terms of durability, but also on the preservation of vitamins in milk and fruit juices.

Changes to the packaging, it has been common in the course of time. Folded flaps were used for the introduction mostly that need to be folded. Then the gable convolution was used for rectangular boxes. For several years, reclosable spouts or rotational closures are used increasingly.

Expansion of the product range

After all possible final products were offered from applesauce to citrus juice in Tetra Pak over the years, the Group's offer was very keen, even for food, long opposed to the tin reserved, coated cardboard packaging ( "Tetra Recart " ) to can. So are packing for vegetables products will be an additional market segment. A well-known customer is the company Bonduelle.


Tetra Pak is the market leader in carton beverage packaging and has eg UHT milk packaging a market share of 82%. For beverage packaging the best selling product of the company is known as the Tetra Brik, which is colloquially usually called Tetra Pak or Tetrapak. There is a parallelepiped container to be transported and sold in the liquid or highly viscous foods. It is made with plastic film and depending on the application with aluminum foil coated cardboard. The plastic film prevents that the cardboard soggy and that the aluminum is attacked by acidic liquids such as fruit juice. The aluminum foil ensures that the carton is light and oxygen.

Tetra Brik was patented on January 9, 1990 in the United States. The protection period expired on August 24, 2008. Since then, other companies can copy the beverage package.


The use of composite materials is controversial from an environmental perspective. Tetra Pak is actively promoting environmental aspects of beverage cartons ( sustainable wood, light weight ), although there are few viable numbers, the extent to which the waste is actually recycled. In addition, in 2005 there were a scandal to beverage cartons, including Tetra Pak, which was negatively affected by the printing of the chemical ITX.

The Tetra Laval Group

In 1993, Tetra Pak graduated with Alfa Laval for Tetra Laval Group. The Group's services encompass Since then, various filling and packaging equipment. Laval is a manufacturer of milking equipment. A part of the company Alfa Laval continues as a subsidiary of Tetra Laval Group under the name DeLaval and the remainder was sold in 2000, and is now an independent listed company. For the Tetra Laval Group since 2003 includes the manufacturer of PET bottles Sidel. The merger with Alfa Laval, its subsidiary Tetra Pak Processing, which operates in the field of plant food industry was born. Meanwhile Alfa Laval is independent again as a component supplier.

The name of Tetra Laval refers to the company's founder, Gustav de Laval; Alfa is only part of the logo.