JAPAN - Showa Aluminum Can Corporation has developed a thermochromic ink that changes colour with the temperature of the contents and also acts as an indicator of the amount of liquid left in the can.
The thermochromic ink was applied on the new design for Asahi Breweries’ ‘Super Dry’ beer as an image of the new Tokyo Sky Tree tower, a new feature of the Tokyo skyline, and the product was released in time for the opening of the new tourist attraction.
When chilled, the ink changes color, from silver to blue or violet, when the temperature drops. As the contents are consumed, the temperature of the upper part of the can changes and the ink reverts to it’s original silver colour providing consumers with a clear indicator as to how much beer is left in the can.
According to a statement from Showa, “Because of downsizing of the thermochromic capsule, the color of this thermochromic ink came out very clear. The change from one color to another color is possible at a predetermined temperature.
“While the process can be applied to many different canned beverages, we developed color-changing cans for the beer industry first, because we wanted customers to feel ‘slight pleasure in the daily life’.
“The ink was adapted to change to blue or violet as an indication of the most appropriate temperature at which the beer should be drunk.
“Giving customers the pleasure of watching the changing colors but also see the functionality of the Tokyo Sky Tree as an indication of the remaining contents.
The Colour-changing can won Showa Aluminum Can Corporation and Asahi Breweries the President’s Award at the Japan Packaging Institute Good Packaging 2012 contest .