Crack Open a Cold One for Beer Can Appreciation Day

January 24th marks the official birthday of the beer can and in my opinion should get some consideration as a national holiday up here in CANada. Obviously, we here at West Coast Canning are a little biased, as beer cans make our world go round, but take a second and think about all that the beer can has given you. It’s generated a lot of self-confidence, whether it comes from the delicious brew it contains, or the superhuman strength it allows to display as you crush it against your head. It’s been the source of a lot of good times and probably just as many hangovers. It’s substituted for a hockey puck, a penholder, a baseball and a doorstop. I’ve said it before, but the beer can really is the Swiss Army Knife of the packaging industry. Maybe that’s why 67 billion of them were consumed last year worldwide.

In celebration of this glorious vessel of good times, lets take a look back at the history of the beer can to see how gracefully it has aged into the best beer package out there.

The American prohibition era that began in 1920 must have been a tough time. The Volstead Act enforced national prohibition, defining an alcoholic beverage as one containing just 0.5% Alc./Vol. Luckily, in 1933 the Volstead Act was modified to allow for production of light beer at 3.2% Alc./Vol, which opened the door to limited production capabilities for American brewers. In November 1933, The Gottfried Krueger Brewing Company out of Newark, New Jersey signed on with the American Can Company, who had developed a workable flat top can model . 2,000 cans of Krueger’s Special Beer rolled off a temporary canning line and into the hands of faithful Krueger drinkers. 91% of these lucky pioneers approved of the beer’s taste in a can, with 85% of those saying it tasted more like draft beer than bottled stuff. With this seal of customer approval, canned beer became a real thing, and on January 24th, 1935 Kruger’s special beer went on the shelves in Richmond, Virginia.

 There have been several re-inventions of the beer can since those first Krueger’s rolled off the line in1935,but all of them have one thing in common: they gave the people what they wanted, a crisp, refreshing beer in a light, portable and protective package. Cheers to that!

Sources used in this article:

RustyCans- Timeline http://www.rustycans.com/HISTORY/timeline.html – Mark E. Benbow

Brewery Collectibles Club of America – Beer Can History http://www.bcca.com/history/beer_can_history.asp

Statistic Brain – Beer Industry Statistics

http://www.statisticbrain.com/beer-industry-statistics/

DING DING! Beer Wars Training Begins

Along with almost everyone else I know, I used the arrival of January 1st, 2016 as an opportunity to hit the reset button and start making some changes for the betterment of myself, and my beer gut. It’s funny because I have made this same resolution year after year and had the same results: two weeks of exercise and clean eating followed by 50 weeks of inactivity and countless calories. Not this time. Not this year.

As a member of the craft beer industry here in Vancouver, BC, I’m lucky to be able to take part in Beer Wars, a charity boxing event in support of the EastSide Boxing Club. Beer Wars is the little brother of Aprons for Gloves, which began in 2012 as a fundraiser to support the EBC and help the coaches offer training programs for at-risk youth and women who have experienced violence. EBC is offering three months of free training to those of us who signed up, all in preparation for fight night scheduled for mid-April. All proceeds from fight night, including ticket sales, sponsorships and beer sales will go back to Eastside Boxing.

I’ve survived the first week of training, and although I’m struggling lift my arms above my head, its already paying dividends and I’m excited about what’s to come. I’ll be posting bi-weekly updates on my training leading up to Beer Wars, and I’ll get some more info on Fight Night as it becomes available. Now let me get back to skipping.

Cheers,

Matty

Racers – Start Your CAN-gines!!

Empty beer cans are used for a lot of different things. In our warehouse alone, they serve as penholders, coffee cups, bottle openers and doorstops. In other words, beer cans are the Swiss army knives of packaging.

What about a beer can race car? The organizers of Vancouver’s first Beer Can Derby like the way you think.

The Derby is set for this Sunday, November 8, 2015 at WISE Hall, in support of the Greater Vancouver Food Bank. Contestants will race their beer can racers on a 64-foot-long track, featuring an 8 to 12 foot starting drop to give the beer cans a boost on their way down the track. Three classes of cars will clash: the Crusher (Cars made with 355mL (12oz) cans); the Tall Boy (Cars made with 473 mL(16oz)cans) and the Oil Can (Cars made with 700-1000mL(24-34oz) cans).

Prizes will be awarded to both the fastest and best looking cars, so attendees are encouraged to make sure their car is not only fast but flashy as well. The coveted Brewer’s Cup will also be presented to the brewery with the fastest car. Attendees are encouraged to construct their cars beforehand, but parts will also be available to make them at the event.

100% of all proceeds from the event go directly towards the Greater Vancouver Food Bank, a non-profit organization that empowers people to nourish themselves by providing access to healthy food, education and training. The GVFB provides assistance to over 28,000 people weekly through 15 food depots and over 100 community agencies located in Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster and North Vancouver.

The event is open to adults only(19+) at the WISE Hall (1882 Adanac Street) from 1p.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets to watch or race cars are $20 and can be purchased here.

For more information, visit the Derby’s website.

Craft Beer Revolution (Part Deux)

We wanted to be a bigger part of the BC craft beer revolution, but we weren’t quite there yet and missed out being mentioned in the First Edition of Joe Wiebe’s – Craft Beer Revolution – The Insider’s Guide to B.C. Breweries. We were still unproven and it was merely an idea and a vision and Joe was the first to see our vision become a reality on our first canning day.

Shortly after he surprised us with a front page article on BC Craft Beer News and again when he featured us on page 60 and 61 in his 2nd edition of the Craft Beer Revolution.

Call us bias, but its a great read and a true insider’s guide to BC Breweries and you can find it at most breweries in BC or on Joe’s website www.craftbeerrevolution.ca

Support Joe and the Craft Beer Revolution and pick up a copy today.

Click Here

It’s A Can Do Attitude

In the Spring of 2014 when we polished off the last few pages of our business plan and decided to hit the ground running we only had one customer (Moon Under Water) that wanted to can about 20HL once a month and that was it.  Of all the breweries we approached there was alot of maybes and a lot of uncertainty trusting two relatively new faces to the craft beer scene. We knew packaging and knew we were early to the craft cans scene in Canada and the road ahead would be anything but easy and might not catch on at all.

Luckily we choose to forge ahead with only one customer and trusted our vision and set out on a mission to be the cleanest and most reliable Canadian mobile canning service that would expand our customers reach.

Fast forward to January 2015 and the craft cans scene on the West Coast and Canada is gaining ground and we are super stoked to be apart of the revolution and featured in the JAN-FEB_2015_TAPS_CANNING

Full article here: JAN-FEB_2015_TAPS_CANNING

BC Craft Beer News – Cover Story

BC Craft Beer News – Canada’s first mobile canning company fills need

The craft brewing industry in British Columbia is full of a tonne of great people and Joe Wiebe – Author of Craft Beer Revolution: The Insider’s Guide to BC Breweries is one of those guys. Having read his book prior to meeting him for a beer in 2014 at the Garrick’s Head Pub , we were excited when we got an e-mail from the Thirsty Writer about an upcoming story he was working on about mobile canning in BC.

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West Coast Canning – Canadian Beer News

This week we were featured in Canadian Beer News as Canada’s first mobile canning company.

West Coast Canning Offers Mobile Canning Service to B.C. Breweries

VANCOUVER, BC – While cans are becoming an increasingly popular package for craft beer, many small breweries are unable to easily offer their products in a canned format due to the financial and space commitments necessary to install a canning line. But for breweries in British Columbia, a more convenient and affordable option is now available.

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