Keg Hounds’ Mark Carpenter Discusses Keg Tracking as On-Premise Channel Begins to Reopen

As the bar and restaurant industry begins the slow return to normalcy, millions of kegs of varying degrees of fullness have sat idle for months in coolers across the country.

Keg Hounds chief revenue officer Mark Carpenter joined Brewbound for a conversation about keg tracking, inventory, maintenance and loss, particularly after the long pause of draft service due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Once you do get your kegs back, empty and clean them,” Carpenter said. “You don’t want a keg just to sit there dirty, because it’s not going to get better. It’s only going to get worse.”

One draft line requires four kegs in near-constant motion from retailer to wholesaler to brewery, Carpenter said. Without proper tracking, some may not return to breweries that own them, leading to a loss of about $100 per keg, according to Carpenter.

Keg Hounds uses RFID technology — radio frequency identification — to identify and track kegs. A typical keg goes through four cycles a year, depending on how quickly its contents sell. The velocity of a keg’s cycles provide valuable information.

“This is going to give you data that’s going to help you make good strategic decisions based on what is probably in a brewery’s top three biggest expenses — the keg float,” Carpenter said.

Watch the conversation above and visit Brewbound’s YouTube channel for more video content. Tune into Brewbound Frontlines Thursdays at 3 p.m. EST for live-streamed panel discussions with leaders from across the country about issues facing the beer industry.

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