Wine Shippers

Atlas Molded Products has supported the wine distribution industry, developing a series of off-the-shelf molded polystyrene wine shippers in various sizes.

In almost any market, loss prevention ties critically to both product success and customer satisfaction on every order. In the highly competitive wine industry, where the product is breakable and perishable, protecting it throughout the transit process is not only challenging but imperative. Big or small, for most production level wineries, the product distribution process is turned over to third party vendors, who specialize in purchasing, warehousing, marketing, and distributing wine to consumers all over the world.

Distributors and fulfillment houses take on the transit process with a strong understanding of the logistics and pitfalls of product delivery over air, land, and sea distribution channels. Not only does wine require transit packaging that prevents breakage or other physical damage to bottles, but many wines also require protective packaging that prevents product degradation due to thermal exposure. With thin margins based on trouble-free, volume distribution, large-scale wine shippers are ever mindful of the cost of packaging components.

Atlas Molded Products has supported the wine distribution industry for many years, developing a series of off-the-shelf molded polystyrene wine shippers in various sizes. Well regarded as a lightweight, durable protective packaging material, Atlas’ molded polystyrene products also lead the industry in thermal certainty for cold-chain payloads of all sorts. Made in advance of need, molded polystyrene wine shippers from Atlas Molded Products are engineered for assured certainty during transit and customer satisfaction upon receipt.


Identify the specific client challenges and construction objectives.

Expertise in anything inherently recognizes the capacity, and often the necessity, for expertise in everything. Long gone are the days of local winemakers, selling their product from the vineyard’s door. Today, winemakers along the West Coast of the United States are largely turning over the distribution process to any of many large-scale online and mail-order retailers, which ship bottles of wine all over the world. Among Atlas’ many wine distribution customers, the largest online retailer boasts sales of more than 2 million bottles of wine a year from a stock of more than 17,000 different types of wine.

The challenges of moving this amount of product not only anywhere, but virtually everywhere in the world are massive. Reoccurring considerations include logistics, materials, scheduling, cost, quality, damage, temperature, transit times, tracking, and many other variables. In all these areas, quantifiable certainty is essential to calculated success.

First, wine needs to be safeguarded against the rigors of the transit process. Typically, wine is shipped by ground freight, traveling potentially several thousand miles in a few days in semi-trailers over America’s highways. Packages are often handled many times by several people going in and out of warehouses, trucks, stores, cars, and homes before the bottles are taken out of the packaging. Second, wine requires stringent temperature control during transit to prevent product degradation. During the entire distribution cycle, the bottles need to stay within a very precise temperature range in a process that may go into and out of several cold chain holding points along the way. While many of the contending products can be reasonably expected to hold a temperature range for close to 24-hours, providing a solution that allows transit times to be extended to 72 hours, offers a sustainable opportunity for cost-savings further down the line.


Detail what Atlas did to solve those challenges and meet the client’s project objectives.

DuraTherm® wine shippers, by Altas Molded Products, are constructed of molded polystyrene and are designed to hold standard size, 750-milliliter bottles in a variety of configurations including 1-, 2-, 3-, 4-, 6-, and 12- bottle packaging. Molded polystyrene is a closed-cell polymer that provides exceptional insulating properties and comes in a variety of compressive resistances to provide a rigid, durable, solid protective shell designed to accommodate a snug fit around bottles for movement-free transit.

The International Safe Transit Association (ISTA) is an international organization that establishes testing procedures and metrics to assess the protective capacity of shipping materials over a combination of performance tests and development tests. Performance tests result in a pass/fail assessment to determine the viability of a packaged product to survive a normal shipment. Development tests are used to compare the relative performance of two or more packaging products or packaging designs. The ISTA sets international standards through laboratory testing procedures based on four types of distribution hazards, which include handling drops and impacts, transportation vibrations, stacking loads, and atmospheric conditions like temperature, humidity, and pressure.

Over years of product development, Atlas Molded Products has continually refined and improved our DuraTherm wine shippers to make them stronger and more durable. An innovative tightening system locks the bottles in place to minimize movement during transport while increasing wall thicknesses, chamfering the corners of the packaging, and engineering the shippers to meet or exceed established ISTA requirements for handling impacts are some of the improvements Atlas has incorporated to make our wine shippers the best on the market.

Unlike wine bottle shippers made of molded paper pulp, in addition to the structural protection, molded polystyrene wine shipper from Atlas also protect against thermal degradation. Atlas’ wine shippers come in both standard and summer-temperature profiles that incorporate thicker foam walls around the bottles for added protection. Well known for its ability to slow the transfer of heat, molded polystyrene from Atlas Molded Products is 98 percent air. Using molded polystyrene shippers, distributors can extend safe transit windows by as much as three times the acceptable travel time compared to molded pulp shippers without fear of product loss to temperature changes.

Maintaining a ready supply of available products is another way Atlas Molded Products outperforms the competition in wine shippers. Our wine shipper manufacturing capability is centered around strategic wine producing regions and able to support nationwide coverage. Our wine shippers are warehoused in advance of distributor need; once orders are made, the off-the-shelf product is delivered in a just-in-time process.


Summarize the overall solutions to client challenges to show why it matters to others.

Atlas Molded Products supplies roughly 1.5 million wine shippers a year to a wide range of distributors across the country. In each case, product certainty through dedicated thermal and structural protective packaging can mean the difference between customer satisfaction and a series of disappointments that reverberate throughout the entire supply chain from consumer to distributor to winemaker. Our ability to innovate, customize packaging to a specific client or industry needs, and willingness to go above and beyond for all our clients is an important part of what separates Atlas Molded Products from the competition.

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