Sealing its fate

Posted on Jan 2, 2017 :: Made in the New North
Jessica Thiel
Posted by , Insight on Business Staff Writer

THE TREND TOWARD CRAFT BEER IN A CAN IS GOOD NEWS for one Manitowoc company.

With ever-increasing sales and growing market share, it’s no secret that the craft beer market is on fire. Today, most craft beer is sold in bottles, but that’s beginning to change thanks to a partnership between Manitowoc’s Wisconsin Aluminum Foundry Co. and Colorado-based Oskar Blues Brewery.

Realizing that glass growlers let in light and don’t always seal well, Oskar Blues worked with the Ball Corp. to develop the Crowler (growler plus can). When the company needed a can sealer, it looked to WAFCO, and now Oskar Blues is the exclusive distributor of the sealer.

The Crowler is a 32-ounce can that keeps beer fresher longer, says Joel Andrew, WAFCO’s general manager of consumer products. While a growler keeps brew at its best for only about five days, Andrew says a Crowler keeps it fresh for upward of 28 days.

“It’s just a better container and doesn’t allow oxygen and light into it,” Andrew says.

John Henfer, plant supervisor of consumer products, is thankful for the partnership and hopes for a craft-beer-in-a-can revolution. “It’s just increased our sales tremendously.”