New Labels Aid in the Craft Beer Market

Keg collar combines with tap handle label in an innovative solution.

Submitted by Avery Dennison

The keg collars on the beer kegs feature the tap labels too, so that piece is never misplaced.

For the rapidly growing and professionally distributed Bellevue Brewing Company of Bellevue, WA, getting tap handle labels to customers had become a real challenge. Tap handles and kegs were being delivered with missing, or forgotten, tap handle labels. And, replacement labels needed to be continually printed in small quantities, which was costly and inefficient.

That’s when the company turned to Tyson Marshall at RIND Print (rindprint.com) to develop a solution. Bellevue Brewing Company’s original idea was to create a piggyback tap handle label attached to the keg collar that could be peeled off and used. But when Marshall ran the numbers it was expensive, so he went to work inventing a totally different approach and brought on his machine and print guru Eric Smith to help him accomplish something that had never been done before.

RIND’s idea was to integrate a pressure-sensitive tap handle label into the tag stock of the keg collar, combining a pressure-sensitive and non-pressure-sensitive solution into one. The tap handle label would then be kiss cut for easy removal.

While the idea to integrate the label was simple, execution was not. Yet, with its “customer first” philosophy, RIND Print was ready to go above and beyond to add value for Bellevue Brewing.

According to Marshall, RIND Print went through a dozen different materials – and multiple renditions – before success was finally found with Avery Dennison materials and adhesive: Avery Dennison white BOPP film with ClearCut™ Adhesive Technology and 10 pt. C1s tag stock.

Six months and thousands of feet of stock later, the company had a one-pass production solution that saved Bellevue Brewing more than 50% of the cost of their original piggyback idea.

RIND’s creativity has earned the company more packaging business with the craft brewery. The company now prints tap handle-integrated keg collars for all of Bellevue Brewing’s varieties of beer, some 15 different SKUs. In addition, Marshall prints the labels for Bellevue Brewing’s 22-ounce bombers and does its sell sheets and beer displays.

The tap label peels off from the keg collar for easy brand distinction.

Bellevue Brewing utilizes RIND’s internal art department to make sure everything they print reflects and supports the brewery’s unique Washington state brand. Bellevue Brewing has built its brand with many of the state’s iconic images, such as Mt. Rainier, pine trees and a bald eagle, to create an appealing, fresh and healthy outdoor vibe that speaks to the craft brewer’s audience.

While RIND’s integrated keg collar has been designed for Bellevue Brewing’s tap handles, it can be customized for various handle sizes, with multiple labels, for other breweries. The size and shape of the collar can also be adjusted to anything imaginable. More importantly, the pressure sensitive/non-pressure sensitive construction can add value in any distribution channel, particularly in the growing areas of track and trace and antidiversion.

“The printing industry treats most processes independently,” says Marshall. “We’re different at RIND. With a stout creative and technical foundation, we are able to hybridize multiple substrates and print techniques that are fresh and original. Labels aren’t just labels anymore. They are parts of a bigger idea. Those ideas are what our clients come to us for. Integrating the keg collar and tap handle is a novel solution for Bellevue Brewing’s specific problem. But the bigger idea of pressure sensitive /non-pressure sensitive constructions is exciting. I can’t wait to see how the idea will evolve.”

Avery Dennison manufactures and distributes display graphics, labeling and packaging materials, retail graphic embellishments and RFID tags that companies around the world use to engage customers and efficiently manage their inventories. The company’s functional pressure-sensitive adhesive label and packaging materials enhance shelf-appeal of food, beverages, health and beauty products while providing consumers with important information. Avery Dennison draws on the latest scientific advancements and years of manufacturing expertise to deliver coated and uncoated papers, films and foil roll materials that meet customers’ diverse needs and requirements. Visit http://label.averydennison.com.