Transition to Canning
It’s been a steep learning curve for the last few months, but FIERCE are happy to have transitioned over to cans for the majority of our small pack beers. We will still do the occasional very limited release in bottles, but we will look to move these to 750ml to encourage sharing and the spread of beery harmony throughout the land. We’re good like that…
When we started out in 2016, we did look into the options of canning. There were a number of solutions for contract canning, which were slowly making their way up into Aberdeen. However, as we wanted to retain control of the quality and scheduling of our beers, we felt that keeping packaging in house was essential. At the time small affordable canning lines weren’t as common as now, and there were fewer breweries who could give us happy stories of how their small form factor line was everything they’d hoped for and more. So FIERCE started out on bottles.
When we looked to expand recently, getting shifted over to cans was top of our wish list. There are many reasons to do this, which have been blogged and debated by our fellow breweries who have already made this journey. For us it came down to a few key issues.
We wanted to increase the quality of the beer getting out into the world, and from almost all of the feedback we’d received from others cans can help. Run your line properly, and you can improve the important metrics that determine fresh tasty beer. For example, our dissolved O2 levels in pack are significantly lower than we managed to achieve in bottle, so the beers are staying fresher for longer. For our hoppy beers especially, this is massive.
We felt that our brand would work better on a can than a bottle, and tests with our designers proved this early on. We are delighted with the look and feel, and think it makes our beers stand out even more on the shelf.
The logistics of getting (relatively) heavy bottles shipped out with our beer in it increased the cost of the product, and the number of breakages on beer sent out through our online shop was eye watering. The move to cans (and their lighter weight) has allowed us to ship more per pallet, to reduce our shipping fee for our online shop, and removing glass from the equation has drastically reduced the number of breakages.
All good things!
The perception of cans in the craft beer sector has improved over the last 2 years, and a trip to your local bottle shop (time to change the name to can shop??) gives evidence to this. When two thirds of the shelves are laden with cans, it shows the public have grown to love this packaging. It has allowed us to make the change with relatively little concern, safe in the knowledge that the majority of others see in this little aluminium pack what we do – the best way to get great fresh beer into the homes of those who want to drink great fresh beer. And can you really enjoy a (responsible) train beer in any other way??
So now we’re switched over, we’ll do everything to keep the standard up, and let you feel confident that FIERCE cans are as good as FIERCE beer gets.