Is the Can Evolving How We Socialise?
The status of the beverage can continues to grow. In 2014, UK shipments of the pack reached more than 9.8 billion, and with the can’s environmental, practical and ethical benefits, it’s easy to understand its popularity. But what of the can’s wider impact, what is its social affect?
As the number of cans being produced increases, so too does the range of drinks being putting into those cans. Today there is a larger menu of canned drink options available than ever before; the rise of canned craft beers is especially notable. From a standing start two years ago, the number of independent canned brews produced in the UK has exceeded 40 and the trend shows no sign of slowing.
Where can we drink?
Some of the greatest influences the can has on the consumer can be seen when we consider how it affects our social choices.
The portability of cans means that drinks can easily be popped into a bag and enjoyed while on the go. Whether hiking, gigging, picnicking or dancing, cans are lightweight and require minimal effort to carry on your person. What’s more, the material properties of the can means drinks cool fast, great when you’re on the run. This makes them the ideal chilled companion when travelling or enjoying the great outdoors.
A Business Insider article agrees, asserting that the can is the best drinks pack for those that enjoy an ‘outdoorsy’ lifestyle – the carrier doesn’t need to worry about leaking liquids, bulky backpacks or breakages from rough handling. When done, they can pop the empty can into a suitable recycling bin, confident that it will processed and returned to the product line.
On the business side, brewers are finding that by canning their beers, they are able to sell their product to a variety of venues they may never have thought about before. While not every venue accepts cans yet, the number that do is growing, especially at music venues, theatres and festivals. Why? Because they are easy-to-dance-with and there’s minimal chance of spillage – a great improvement on the traditional plastic venue cup, easily dropped or slopped onto the ground, and awkward to carry.
Away from everyday life in the UK, cans have allowed us to drink in some rather unusual places too. Did you know that a can of fizzy drink was the first soft drink consumed in space?
Cans are beautiful
The metaphorical beauty of the can is great. Consumers feel it in the confidence they have that, whatever beverage they are consuming (alcoholic or not), it is being served in the exact way the producer intended.
The can has a physical beauty too. The 360 o design opportunity provided by the pack has become the inspiration for graphic designers and up-and coming, hipster artists alike. Some of the stunning creations now seen on cans wouldn’t look out of place in a gallery. Something the nation’s independent brewers and brand managers are taking full advantage of.
Drinks cans affect our lives more than many of us realise. W
hether it is their positive environmental impact (cans are made from aluminium or steel, both permanently available materials) or their social one, the benefits of the can are vast and unique.
How have cans evolved your way of socialising?! Let us know on Twitter @CanMakersUK