This research explores the downstream perceptions of liquid carton board versus competing materials in packaging applications for juice. The methodology used is focus groups. The context is sustainability and functional performance, and related potential implications for the beverage industry value chain. The purpose is to get a deeper insight and understanding of functionality in relation to juice beverage packaging. The results confirm that there is no optimal packaging for every juice product, but a multitude, depending on the distribution channel, retail outlet, customer preferences, and context of consumption. There are some general packaging preferences, but the main deciding criteria for purchase seem to be the product characteristics in terms of quality, taste, brand, price and shelf life. For marketing reasons, packaging has to be adopted to the product and its positioning, liquid carton board packaging seem to have some functional advantages in distribution and is considered as sustainable and functional among many consumers. Major drawbacks seem to be shape limitations, lack of transparency, and lack of a “premium look”. To improve packaging performance and avoid sub-optimization, actors in the beverage industry value chain need to be integrated in development processes.