Sustainable Packaging for the Protection of the Environment

There is no question the draft beer keg is the most environmentally responsible beverage package in the brewing industry today! Think about it, the draft beer keg is returnable, refillable, and recyclable. The draft beer keg fits the green profile better than any other beverage package on the market.

The draft beer keg dates back to our founding fathers who came over on the Mayflower in 1620. Departing from England in search of the New World, for more than two months the passengers and crew weathered storms, sickness and starvation without taking to land — until they ran out of beer. Even then the draft beer keg had its rightful place as the ideal “on-premise” package serving and sustaining the 100-plus passengers aboard the Mayflower.

The famous ale that was shipped to India was also delivered in kegs, and only transferred to bottles for the civilian middle class; the troops drank their beer the same way they drank it back home – dispensed right from the keg.

When you consider this history, you start to realize the value of the draft beer keg then, and now. Even today the draft beer keg remains at the forefront of sustainability and function – it has no equal!

27,000 glasses of draft beer served over the life of the keg!

The draft beer keg has a service life of over 30 years, and when you work the math the average keg serves 180 (12-ounce) glasses and turns 5 times per year; this means that over the life of the keg 27,000 glasses will be served from a single keg! That’s the equivalent to 1125 cases (12-ounce bottles or cans -24 units).

A profile of change, the draft beer system

In the 60’s it was quite common to find the average bar or restaurant serving 4 draft beers from a simple refrigerated direct draw draft beer system – 2 domestic and 2 imported brands.

Today, the number of beers on tap can reach 100+ and there are many outlets that feature 30-40 draft beers as a point of distinction to attract new customers. There is also a trend in many mainstream outlets to offer 8, 10, or 12 beers on tap to take advantage of the successful trend toward seasonal, craft and microbrew beers.

To satisfy the operators need to serve more choices and serve the coldest and best beer in town, the Glycol-Cooled long-draw system has become the industry’s standard. The glycol system offers a “pre-engineered “plug and pour solution” that has taken the guesswork out of best practices and in the process has delivered; high quality and improved performance while reducing installation time and service cost.

Integral to the improved performance of the glycol system is the use of blended gas (CO2 and Nitrogen) as the primary pressure source; using blended gas preserves draft beer quality and offers the benefit of consistent pour quality from the first glass to the last glass, minimizing waste and maximizing keg yields.

The “Draft Beer Station” a destination point at the bar

Merchandising and marketing draft beer at the point-of-sale has always been a challenge. Now with the addition of the integrated “Draft Beer Station” operators can for the first time offer and promote draft beer with a high degree of eye appeal. The Draft Beer Station is efficient and functional and delivers the greatest return-on-investment in the smallest amount of space. For example, a 10-tap draft beer station measures 38 inches in width and is capable of dispensing up to 20,000 ounces of draft beer, that’s over 1300 pints dispensed by a single bartender!

Profitable for the Retailer

In addition to its green attributes, draft beer keg is the most profitable on-premise package offered today; for the retailer, the economic, high margin profile of draft beer delivers a maximum return-on-investment, it can’t be beaten! Draft beer profits play a major role in the overall profitability of every bar and restaurant and besides being profitable it is one of the best products to increase same-store sales and increase “the average cost per check” – promoting draft beer delivers added value to every on-premise operator.

Winning new customers with Craft and Microbrew Beers!

With the growth and popularity of the Craft and Microbrew beers across all full-service restaurant segments; family dining, casual dining and fine dining, promoting seasonal beers on tap offers differentiation and choice. Just look at the number of operators promoting specialty beers to complement the demand for more food choices, there is no doubt that the tech-savvy consumer is looking for options and with the variety of seasonal and craft draft beers on the market today, specialty draft beers are the perfect fit to help increase sales and profits.

For the brewery, draft beer is the ideal sampling tool to help promote new products and increase brand awareness. There is no doubt with the numerous brand choices available today; each tap handle offers a unique opportunity to gain visibility and trial in the brewer’s quest to build brand recognition.

Draft Beer Sales in the USA have increased over the last 3 consecutive years…

Over the last three years the US brewing industry has enjoyed steady growth in draft beer sales. It is no coincidence that the draft beer keg some 388 years later continues to deliver value throughout the distribution chain; from the brewer, to wholesaler, to retailer.

Proven Value

Over the history of the brewing industry, the benefits of marketing and promoting draft beer have been validated time and time again and the expectation is that keg package will continue to grow in prominence as the world beer market looks for better ways to support the need for sustainable packaging. There is no denying that the draft beer keg is the “greenest of green” and that draft beer profitability will continue to have a major influence on the growing demand for beer in keg. Green and Profitable is the draft beer keg and the brewing industry’s contribution to environmentally sustainable packaging.

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