A design firm is developing a paper water bottle that could help revolutionise the beverage industry in Hong Kong and around the world.
Jim Warner, industrial design boss for Brandimage - Desgrippes & Laga, calls his invention the '360 Water Bottle'.
'It's changing everything you know about the bottle,' he said. 'It's redefining the experience ... tactically, visually, functionally and then even on the disposal side.'
The 360 is still in development. The prototype, molded from hard brown plastic, is about 18cm tall, holds 355ml and comes with a tear-away top, which can then double as a cap or a cork.
The containers can be made with local resources such as woven bamboo, sugar cane or banana leaf pulp.
The bottles can be shipped flat and filled from the bottom or the side at local plants. And with a basic paper form and a simple lining, they will be easy to recycle.
'We're actually coming back to the simplest of all materials,' Mr Warner explained, noting the 360 was not like milk cartons or juice cartons. Those are 'a heavy-weighted paperboard with what used to be a wax coating or now it's a combination of wax, synthetic films and even foils, [It's] very difficult to utilise and regrind in recycling because they're laminated together or saturated - so it's really not even paper'.
The 360 was created as a green alternative to plastic.
'Because of the sheer volume of water [containers] out there, what we wanted to do is to create a design that had mass impact,' Mr Warner said. 'There's all this issue about bottling water, and the plastics and energy it takes into account.'
The 360 looks different - like an angular rendering of a small stomach or Spanish wine bota.
The bottles could be on store shelves around the world in around two years from the time Mr Warner and his company partner up with the right multinational, he said.
'Sometimes you can be futuristic, but there is no way ... you are ever going to make it.
'This is a sweet spot in the marketplace - to really do something that's doable, makes an impact and is really different. If you can hit all those things then that's the brass ring, that's the big prize.'
Mr Warner has designed other containers, including the Windex trigger-spray bottle, the Turtles confectionary box and the Crayola coloured-pencil tray.