Craft Spirits Continues Growth in United States
According to Research by Beverage Marketing Corporation, the craft spirits industry continues to trend upward in the United States with a Compound Annual Growth Rate of 13%. This rate would put the number of craft spirits distillers at over 3,400 by 2021 should it continue. At Liquid Packaging Solutions, we have seen little evidence to suggest anything to the contrary, as distilled spirits remains one of the top industries served by LPS in 2017.
Over the past several years, LPS has manufactured a number of different packaging systems for distillers across the U.S. and Canada. Some distillers look to packaging machinery to assist with a single task, such as rinsing bottles prior to filling, actual filling or even capping and sealing. Others have the production demand and desire to automate the entire process with a turnkey packaging solution. While the distilled spirits industry is narrowly defined compared to some other industries, such as Food & Beverage or Household Products, the packaging solution for each distiller is still likely to vary based on a number of different factors.
For many craft distillers, space for packaging product can be an issue. Small batches may still take up a lot of room and the production space remaining may not be able to accommodate a full, automatic line. In addition, smaller craft distillers may produce for a local or regional area, meaning the number of bottles or cases may be limited, reducing the need for a fully automatic line. For these distillers, semi-automatic and tabletop equipment may be the best solution. These machines typically do not require a conveyor system and can take up as little space as a tabletop, as the name suggests. While not fully automatic and requiring a little more help from an operator, semi-automatic bottle rinsers, filling machines, bottle cappers and labeling equipment can still speed up the packaging process.
On the other end of the spectrum are those craft distillers with higher outputs and production demands. For those serving a national or international base, an automatic packaging system may be necessary to meet such demand. However, even automated systems may be set up differently from distiller to distiller depending on factors ranging from the packaging being used to simply the desire of the distiller. Automatic equipment can also include bottle rinsers, liquid fillers, capping or corking machines, capsule spinners, neck banders and labeling equipment, as well as equipment such as turntables, laning conveyors, case packers and other machines to assist in loading and packing spirits as well.
As LPS has seen the past several years at the American Distilling Institute's Craft Spirits Expo, this industry is not only strong, but a lot of fun as well! With so many unique stories and history about products past and present, we always look forward to partnering up with our distiller friends to bring so many different flavors to the masses! If you have questions about packaging equipment for distilled spirits, do not hesitate to call LPS and speak with a Packaging Specialist.