For Craft Brews, A Clear Case for Glass

Innovation, taste and sustainability are leading more brewers to choose glass. Sponsored by the Glass Packaging Institute.

Glass Packaging Institute May 1, 2018 - 4 min read

For Craft Brews, A Clear Case for Glass Primary Image

Now, more than ever, it’s easy and cost-effective to choose glass bottles to package your brews. The industry is constantly innovating, from bottling to design, and consumers have taken notice. In fact, 72% of craft beer drinkers say glass bottles are best to drink from.

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While a legacy packaging option, glass continues to be an innovator in protecting what’s inside, while doing no harm to the environment – and even keeping beer colder longer. From single serve to commemorative designs and refillable glass bottles, brands use glass packaging to stand out among competitors and create new consumer experiences in a world where earning loyalty is the goal of every brand. Brands that package in glass know the package is just as important as what’s inside because it all contributes to reputation – and in today’s world, reputation directly impacts sales.


Why Bottle in Glass?

Made with three natural ingredients, plus recycled glass, glass packaging requires no chemical liner and is endlessly recyclable, making it a sought-after choice for brands with sustainability goals and consumers who want to support the environment. Glass packaging is the only food and beverage packaging Generally Regarded As Safe (GRAS) by the FDA. It’s also a 100% made-in-America choice for brewers, especially during a time when some packaging materials are facing potential tariff charges. From a consumer perspective, a recent survey found that the top two reasons cited by those who prefer drinking beer from bottles are taste and mouth feel (Source: YouGov, April 2018. Data compiled from a single survey fielded in the U.S. on April 17, 2018. Drinkers 21+). The experience of glass is compelling for consumers and brewers alike. Through shape, color, embossing, labeling, decorating and closures, craft brewers are creating more consumption experiences with glass than with any other packaging type.

Get Your Brew into a Bottle

It can be easy and cost-effective for new brewers to get their craft brew into a bottle. With glass bottles, brewers can order a minimum of a pallet, whether shopping online or working directly with a vendor. (BOB) offers glass beer bottles direct from Ardagh Group’s glassmaking facilities for purchase with a credit card or PayPal account, and brewers can request a sample before ordering. O-I’s On Demand platform offers low minimum orders, credit card payment, a stock inventory program and custom bottle design services through work with a member of O-I’s sales team.

Brewers often move their brew into glass bottles based on growth, finances and market demand. While it can be an investment to install all types of filling lines, options for automatic and semi-automatic glass bottle equipment span the price range. Some brewers feel that glass, and filling lines for glass, lead to lower levels of dissolved oxygen, ensuring their brew maintains freshness, flavors and aromas.

For brewers without a bottling line, mobile bottlers can come directly to the brewer and fill on premise. And with glass bottles, there are low minimums. For brewers with their own bottling lines, delivery can be scheduled to move bottles directly from truck to filling line.

From cost benefits to consumer preference and perception, it’s clear why craft brewers are choosing glass. For more information on glass packaging, visit