We've been able to warm ourselves this winter with a can of steaming self-heating coffee in our frost bitten hands, meanwhile those great coffee drinkers – the Italians – have been cooly sipping their own self-chilled espressos.

The company responsible for Caldo Caldo self-heating coffee packs, worked with Lawson Mardon Singen to develop the self-cooling aluminium containers that begin the chilling process when a button is pressed on the base of the cup.

Freddo Freddo comprises a plastics outer shell split into two chambers containing the cooling agents water and sodium thiosulphate which are separated by a membrane. Inside the outer shell is an aluminium cup with a peelable lid that houses the coffee.

Once the membrane has been broken by a light press of the thumb, the agents mix causing a cooling reaction that swirls around the aluminium cup to chill the beverage. Customers are advised to shake the product for 40 seconds before peeling the lid.

A 75ml version has been developed on top of the original 40ml container for cappuccino and tea products.

Chiari and Forti reports a satisfactory response from the Italian market, with 22M units so far sold for both Caldo Caldo and Freddo Freddo. It will sell to interested international markets.