Chinese canmakers sign up to make lighter-weight CDL ends

Four canmakers in China have signed licences to produce a beverage end design that offers weight savings of 10 per cent or more.

It will be the first time that the ends, developed by US-based Container Development Ltd (CDL), will have been available in the People’s Republic.

The four canmakers are CPMC Co, Shanghai Baosteel EOE Co, Xiamen Baofeng Industry Co and YIWU Easy Open Lid Industry Corp.

This year is the 15th in which CDL ends have been commercially produced. In the final quarter of 2020, CDL will be celebrating a cumulative total of one trillion ends, said senior executive vice president of sales Jim Wilkins.

“At current production levels we will reach the second trillion in well under half the time it took to reach the first trillion,” Wilkins said. “With current annual production volume of approximately150 billion and growing, it could be argued that CDL is the benchmark for aluminium beverage ends.”

The global market for beverage cans and corresponding ends is estimated to be approaching 400 billion with growth of about 3 per cent a year.

Worldwide, 25 canmakers are licenced to produce the CDL end design, which is available in 200, 202 and 206 diameters, using tooling made by CDL’s sister company Container Manufacturing Ltd.

The four canmakers in China will initially have installed yearly capacity to make 10 billion CDL ends, most of which will be the most popular 202 size. YIWU will be the first in China to also make the smaller 200 diameter.

Wilkins said that other canmakers in China are keen to produce the ends. “There are more Chinese canmakers in the queue for CDL but the timing has been delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic,” he said. “It is our hope we can have them on board in 2021.”

The weight saving of 10 per cent or more compared to the once popular B64 design from Alcoa is achieved with novel geometry. While the B64 202 end is made from coil with a gauge of 0.216mm and a shell blank diameter of 72.26mm, the CDL is made from a thinner gauge of 0.208mm and a smaller blank diameter of 69.49mm.