New packaging is latest innovation for craft brewer
And while the 9.1 percent ABV, 103 IBU double IPA is sure to please the hop heads, the packaging was even more intriguing: a 12 oz. tallboy, the same a package used by mega-brewers Anheuser-Busch (for Michelob Ultra) and Heineken (for, among others, Heineken Light).
Sixpoint President Shane Welch said there were a number of factors that prompted him to use the so-called ‘slim-can,’ something seldom seen in the craft world and more closely associated with energy drinks, among other beverage types.
“We wanted to be able to offer the beer to our customers without it being a departure from our regular price point,” he said. “There is something I like about being able to get a double IPA for under $10 and delivering value to our customers is important.”
Welch also said that retailer space was a key consideration.
“A lot of our customers are in New York and the biggest premium is space,” he said. “This format allows us to maximize the space and when you are in business in this city, you have to make every square inch count.”
Sixpoint’s introduction of a canned package last May, along with its well-hyped location, has meant big business for the Brooklyn-based brewer. Welch said the company produced roughly 25,000 barrels of beer in 2011, up from around 12,000 in 2010.
This growth was aided by the partnership with the Lion Brewery in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., allowing Sixpoint the ability to move into aluminum from what had been a draught-only business model.
Welch also said the brewery put 60-70 percent of its total production into cans in 2011, with 80 percent of the company’s total production (draught and cans) tied up in its four core brands – The Crisp, Sweet Action, Righteous Ale and Bengali Tiger.
Resin marks the seventh canned offering from the brewery and Welch said customers can expect to see at least one more new style in cans in 2012. Welch also confirmed that despite recent label approval for its saison, Harbinger, that offering will not be canned until 2013. Harbinger will; however, be available on draught in 2012.