For rapidly growing and professionally distributed Bellevue Brewing Co. of Bellevue, Wash., 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 to develop a solution.
Bellevue Brewing’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 Tyson ran the numbers it was expensive — so he got 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.
Tyson’s idea was to integrate a PS 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 beautifully simple, execution was not. Yet, with its “customer first” philosophy, Rind Print was primed to go above and beyond to add value for Bellevue Brewing.
According to Tyson, Rind Print went through a dozen different materials — and multiple renditions — before success was finally found with Avery Dennison materials and adhesive. What worked? The 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 percent of the cost of their original piggyback idea.
Innovation that means business
Rind Print’s creativity has earned the company more packaging business with the craft brewery. Rind now prints tap handle-integrated keg collars for all their varieties of beer — some 15 different SKUs. In addition, Tyson prints the labels for Bellevue Brewing’s 22-ounce bombers and does their sell sheets and beer displays. Bellevue utilizes Rind’s internal art department to make sure everything they print reflects and supports Bellevue Brewing’s unique Washington state brand. Bellevue Brewing has built its brand with many of the state’s iconic images — like 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 PS/non-PS construction can add value in any distribution channel, particularly in the growing areas of track and trace and antidiversion.
But, as Tyson points out, Rind is uniquely positioned to grow the PS/non-PS development.
“The printing industry treats most processes independently. 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 PS/non-PS constructions … now that’s exciting. I can’t wait to see how the idea will evolve.”
Cassandra Yu is an associate product manager (Rapid Roll) for Avery Dennison Label and Packaging Materials. She works with craft breweries and converters to select the right materials for keg collar applications and more.
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