Innis & Gunn looks to brew future success with new look

Scottish brewer Innis & Gunn has unveiled an eye-catching new look for its ‘Originals’ range, led by its flagship beer, ‘The Original’, as it looks to brew further success. The new design signals another step forward for the premium beer brand which, now in its 18th year, has become one of the UK’s biggest independent, international beer businesses.

The overall redesign and repackaging of the ‘Originals’ portfolio which includes ‘The Original’, ‘Caribbean Rum Cask’ (formerly named Blood Red Sky) and ‘Irish Whiskey Cask’, will further solidify Innis & Gunn’s position as a brewer of premium, original and unique beer. In research, target drinkers responded well to the new look with 74% stating intent to purchase.

Each of the beers will now be available in clear glass bottles so consumers can clearly see the beautiful colours of the beer inside. The bottles themselves are embossed, proudly highlighting the Innis & Gunn brand name and the brewer’s home city, Edinburgh.

Considerable investment has also gone into the updated packaging designs which are immediately striking, with detailed depth including gold foil, print embossing and watermarks. Subtle language updates have also been made to better reflect Innis & Gunn’s innovative brewing style, provenance, and consumer understanding.

As a final touch, the labels feature the signature of Master Brewer, Dougal Gunn Sharp and an ‘approved by’ signature, which has been awarded to Innis & Gunn team member Jeremy Houston to mark his decade with the business.

Goodbye plastic

In store, these beers will now feature in the Speciality category, more synonymous with beers of world renown and quality, which better suits the Innis & Gunn ‘Originals’ range and drinker. The move has been well received by Innis & Gunn’s off-trade customers, with listings increasing to include a newly launched 4x330ml basket pack of ‘The Original’, which is part of the brewer’s move out of plastic packaging. The new bottles will start to appear on shelf from June, with Irish Whiskey Cask following from July.

The new design will also be visible in the on-trade where ‘The Original’ is available on draught, with updated livery and a new POS range rolling out to support.

Those who shop directly with Innis & Gunn online will notice a new look website from the brewer and shoppers will be able to receive the new packaging on orders placed.

The brewing methods and the beers themselves will not change and drinkers can expect the same quality and taste that they know and love. Additionally, each of the beers in the portfolio were recently awarded Grand Gold at the 2021 global Monde Selection Quality Awards.

The Original, a single malt whisky cask matured golden beer which launched the brewer to the world back in 2003 and still stands unique in the beer market today will lead the portfolio. The new clear 330ml bottle will better show the vibrant colour of 6.6% Scottish golden beer, which continues to prove popular internationally and in the UK, where it’s currently growing at 13% YOY in the off-trade and holding third place in the premium, single 330ml bottle category.

Blood Red Sky, the UK’s number five brand in the premium, single 330ml category has been renamed ‘Caribbean Rum Cask’ to better illustrate the origins of the casks used to mature the beer. Still in 330ml format, the clear bottle will allow drinkers to see the incredibly rich red colour of the 6.8% brew.

Completing the portfolio is ‘Irish Whiskey Cask’. The once limited-edition annually released Scottish stout will now be available in 330ml clear bottles  all year round. Due to continued demand, this twist on Celtic connections will now become a permanent fixture, which will be welcome news for its dedicated drinkers.

Gunning for growth

The new designs are at the core of Innis & Gunn’s overall growth strategy and a principal output of a large-scale brand positioning review over the last year, which has further cemented the role Innis & Gunn’s completely unique portfolio of beers plays for consumers.

Dougal Gunn Sharp, Founder and Master Brewer, Innis & Gunn said: “Our new look ‘Originals’ range, led by our flagship beer, ‘The Original’, is another step forward for Innis & Gunn. We have big ambitions and this packaging update supports our growth strategy, especially as we look to roll-out in England, bringing our premium beers to new drinkers.

“There is no change to the beers themselves in terms of taste or the methods we use to brew them. Our drinkers love our beers and Innis & Gunn performs well around the world, so there is absolutely no need to change their recipes. Additionally, these beers have been awarded at the highest levels, most recently at Monde Selection, where each was awarded Grand Gold.

“We believe this rebrand simply brings our packaging in line with the quality of beer within the bottle. We are extremely proud of the beer we make. Each of our ‘Originals’ is just that, original. The new look is standout both in its design and its confidence. We are clearly showing the different liquid colours of our beers, better describing their provenance and our innovative brewing methods and we are sure this will be welcomed by current and new drinkers alike.”

The packaging update follows a strong year for Innis & Gunn, whose sales in the UK off-trade increased almost 30% YOY and its e-commerce platform experienced phenomenal demand, with sales up 900% YOY.

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