What are some of the unique solutions that you offer at Saverglass?
Michael Niehaus: Saverglass offers the largest selection of “stock” high end/premium liquor bottles and decanters in the industry—which we sell in quantities as small as one pallet. We are also the industry leader in producing “custom” bottles/decanters of all shapes and sizes—supplying unique/iconic brands from the largest spirits companies in the world to the local craft distiller in your town. We have production facilities in North America (brand new facility), Europe and the Middle East. One of our unique capabilities is that in addition to making bottles and decanters, we also offer full decorating services (screen printing, hot stamping, spray coatings, acid etching, metallization, sand blasting, applying accessories, etc). Our “Qualiflex” program is very unique, as we are able to offer customization (example: add embossing, etc) of our stock Saverglass bottles (example: Driftless Glen, New Riff, Trails End, Vikre, Pavan, etc) and custom bottles in small production run quantities (10,000 to 13,000 bottles). In addition we can produce colored glass through our coloration feeder. Another unique offering we have is stock glass stoppers, which is an excellent option to upgrade your packaging to give it a unique upscale look. We recently have begun to offer case-packing to our North American customers. So, Saverglass is able offer full turn-key services for all of your glass packaging requirements.
What do you see as the biggest trends in packaging for the distilled spirits industry?
Customization, without a doubt. With more and more stock bottles available on the market, our customers are looking to stand out on the shelf. Our design teams work closely with customers and their packaging designers/agencies to develop unique eye-catching designs. Another trend is complete decoration of the bottle—whereby the customer receives a “complete” package—where all they or their co-packer needs to do is “fill it and cap it”. The end result is a premium package with consistent uniform packaging quality/display that draws attention to the customer’s brand!
From your perspective, how has the craft spirits business evolved over the past few years?
We are noticing a trend in the industry that craft distillers are investing more in their packaging than in the past. Year’s ago, many customers were purchasing a popular stock bottle on the market and applying a label and going with it. Now, with the growing craft market and so many new product offerings, shelf space is at premium. Distillers are upgrading their packaging, coming up with unique bottle designs that help their brands stand out on the shelf. In the past, distillers would balk at investing in custom molds. Now, they are starting to see the strong benefits of doing so. One example is Crystal Head Vodka—how many times have we all been in the liquor store and we have heard customers commenting about that design? It’s been widely reported you have four seconds to catch your potential customers attention at the shelf. Well, that brand has been a huge success that we at Saverglass have been blessed to be part of! If you can get them to pick it up and talk about it, you’ re well on your way! I was recently in a bar with a large customer and he and I commented on the crowded bar back shelves that was well back lit—we both noticed how easy it was determine some of the brands by their unique iconic shapes. That is easiest way for a new brand to gain recognition—invest in the premium custom packaging, get your brand to stand out on the shelf.