Why We Purchased a Canning Line: Timing and Traction Lessons

Back in October, we purchased our first canning line — new to us of course. 

One question I always asked myself early on in this process was, “when would you know you needed a canning line?” 

While it’s not a simple answer, it came on the back of self-distribution rights changing in Kentucky. 

At this point, we’re a little over a year into self-distribution. 

Is it always sunshine and rainbows? No, absolutely not. But what it has done for our business as a whole has been a game changer. 

Early this year we reached 100 distribution clients with draft. Not all of those 100 are consistent week to week, but many of them are month to month. 

Typically our ⅙ bbls are weekly and our ½ bbls are biweekly or monthly. 

Just like the larger distributors, we utilize Fintech which assists in competition. Additionally, Fintech provides a potential relationship database that they’re willing to share. One look at that spreadsheet and you’ll realize that package opportunities can significantly improve your sales footprint. 

We looked at mobile canning and still believe that’s a great option. We simply ran into the perfect opportunity through friendships within our state guild. 

Having our own canning line gives us flexibility to package what we want, when we want. We believe strongly in keeping employee hours in house as much as possible as opposed to outsourcing. 

As we watched draft pick up we wanted to not only reach more distribution clients, but we also wanted another option for our taproom guests and distribution alike. 

Operating a canning line, as many of you know, can be a frustrating task. However, the first three days of canning brought together out team in ways I’m still processing. 

Even though the first couple of days were tough, the camaraderie with an outcome like cans produced so much hype within our space. 

With our first can order we went with wrapped cans from CanSource utilizing our new-to-us line from Cask. The wrapped cans are beautiful and with only one minor issue in shipping, we have a successful timeline which to prepare all other orders. 

Cans have been flying out the door and we’re picking up customers that want our products but may not want to sit at a taproom. 

My personal dream for our town is to have our product at every backyard barbeque and celebration from now into the future. With cans in place this opportunity is a reality that our whole team has gotten behind.

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