The folk at Molson Coors think the Canadian beer drinker needs another style of bottle packaging, and it’s one that launched south of the border a few years ago. The new widemouth bottle hit store shelves around the country following Canada Day and gives beer drinkers another choice in packaging.
The first bottle off the new Toronto packaging line, the widemouth bottle is most likely thought of as the latest Coors Light bottle, but Molson Coors has launched three brands initially in Canada with the new aluminum bottle. Both Molson Canadian and Coors Light Iced T are also available in the new bottles. But do we really need another packaging option? According to Molson, the answer is a resounding “yes.”
“Our drinkers have not been asking for something like this, but they’ve seen a similar format in the US, and we wanted to be the first to introduce the widemouth bottle in Canada,” said Troy McCann, Molson Coors’ innovation manager who was responsible for the emergence of the new Toronto packaging line.
I’ll admit to being skeptical when McCann and I first started talking about the new bottle, and one of my points — that beer is really meant to be poured into a glass than consumed directly from the container (whatever that container may be) — he agreed to, but he noted that the widemouth bottle is perfect for Canadian summers. The bottle’s mouth is wider, giving drinkers more of a pint-like drinking experience, but it also provides convenience for campers.
When asked about the resealable cap, McCann said it’s not there for long-term storage, but more to protect the beer in certain situations. Imagine, if you will, the camper surrounded by tens of thousands of mosquitoes. That camper can take a drink and screw the cap to avoid any extra protein making its way in the beer. Because it’s aluminum like beer cans, it’s also more-or-less unbreakable, and according to McCann, the design makes it quicker to chill than other packaging options.
“Having something lightweight and unbreakable is awesome. Having it be easy and quick to chill in ice, I’ll admit I’m not always the best at planning to get my beer cold, but a cold beer is a better beer,” McCann said.
For now, the new packaging line in Toronto is only running the new widemouth bottles, but Molson Coors has left open the possibility to expand to other packaging options in the future. McCann was tight-lipped about types of packaging that may come off that line in the future, but he said the line was specifically designed to be flexible. Add another component to it, and voila! The brewery could be sending a whole new packaging concept out to consumers.
“We really view this as an incubation line for innovation. It’s a small, slow-feed packaging line that allows us to work on new formats like this early in their life without affecting the performance of our larger, more efficient, faster packaging lines in our breweries,” McCann said.
We’ll have to wait to see what else Molson Coors has up its sleeve.