The market for many products, especially those that have built a website and made a name for themselves, usually offers to ship. A shipping option allows them to expand their market and, in return, gain more traction on their sites. This is true not only for non-perishable things but also for food and beverages. Here’s how to ship beer.
Considerations When Shipping Beer
There is less to consider when shipping things that are conventionally suitable for shipping, like things made of plastic or any other strong and durable. However, shipping beer can be quite a challenge for many.
Not only is it because some brands use glass bottles as packaging, but because beers are also sensitive when it comes to condition and storage. Breweries establish guidelines on storing their products, so checking on them is essential to ensure you’re handling your beer well.
Packaging is one of the main things you need to consider when shipping beer. This component is very important as it will be the pillar of safety for your beer. If you pack carelessly and mindlessly, the beer might not reach the destination safely, or worse, it could spill or break, putting all the efforts in vain.
So, your biggest concern when sending beer is ensuring that the product arrives intact and unspoiled. In beers, it’s good to be more careful as the bottles or cans may explode if they are transported over rough terrain.
Rules and Regulations
Beers are subject to some rules and regulations, of course, mainly because it has alcohol content and specific areas have their own set of rules when it comes to this. As could be expected, not everyone can receive a shipment of beer. It is necessary to comply with a variety of federal and state laws. To be able to ship, you may need to comply with the following.
- A current and active state-issued business license shows that your operation complies with all local, state, and federal laws. First, you should make sure that you are doing everything legally and without compromising anything about the business.
- Of course, before shipping, you would need to have a valid certificate of manufacturing or dealership. This document should demonstrate the legality of your alcohol acquisition.
- A valid shipping license is also recommended. This document monitors the companies that ship alcoholic beverages over state lines. It’s a visibility document which is also a plus as some customers are careful and picky about who they transact with, so it’s best if your business is foolproof!
A Guide on How to Pack Beer
Careless packing can lead to lost revenue and unhappy consumers, making this a critical step in shipping. You may lose customers and profit when you are a sloppy packer. Make sure you establish a good packing technique and employ it effectively in your products. Here are some packaging ideas you can try.
For bottled beers, the one thing to avoid is breaking the glass. It’s also best that the beers are not bumping into each other more than they should– it should be adequately minimized.
- Rubber bands
- Bubble wrap
- Ziplock (optional)
- One of the first things you need to check when shipping bottled beer is that the bottles must have their caps securely fastened.
- Get a layer of wrap and wrap the bottles according to what you deem is best for the order. If you are to ship a single bottle, cover it with a layer of bubble wrap and secure it with tape.
- Add rubber bands to secure it better.
- You can place the bottle in a Ziploc or immediately put it in the box.
The main point for canned beers is to ensure they won’t move during transport. This means you must close any spaces that could exist as much as possible.
- Bubble wrap
- Box inserts
- Wrap them individually with bubble wrap to help fill the gap and ensure they fit tightly in the box.
- Secure with tape.
- Place them carefully in the box and observe where you need to enforce fillers like box inserts or newspapers.
- Using the fillers, close any gaps as neatly as possible.
There are still many ways to pack beers; you need to figure out which is best for your product.
The Shipping Process
Of course, like any other product for shipping, there is a standard protocol for shipping beer. This is why you should be informed beforehand to avoid wasted time and angry customers. The earlier the processing, the better. Here are some of the basic things to know about the shipping process.
United Parcel Service of America, Inc (UPS)
As a first step, you have to get a license. Following this procedure, you will be well on your way to being approved by UPS and signing a contract with them to deliver beer. It’s essential to check the laws of the state where you’re based.
Appropriate permits to distribute beer directly to customers are also necessary. It’s also imperative to confirm that buyers are of legal drinking age before including them as the shipment recipient.
On the other hand, several states permit beer to be shipped directly to customers if it was acquired from a brewery outstate as long as the brewery has the appropriate licensing.
Federal Express (FedEx)
It’s important to note that FedEx does not allow the shipment of alcoholic beverages by private individuals. Businesses with valid alcohol shipping permits are the only entities permitted to ship. These businesses may also send alcoholic beverages to buyers in specific locations after enrolling in the Alcohol Shipping Program.
Before shipping, please verify that your deliveries are per all local, state, and federal shipping rules before sending them through FedEx. FedEx also requires a signature from someone of legal age, so no rules are broken.
United States Postal Service (USPS)
Unfortunately, shipping alcoholic beverages, including beer, via the United States Postal Service is illegal. Additionally, the United States Postal Service adheres to stringent regulations regarding packing goods that hold alcohol.
They are strict and will not hesitate to do what is necessary when their rules are ignored. USPS won’t accept packages with labels or logos on them indicating a particular liquor brand.
Helpful Tips for Successful Shipping
Tip 1: Research
Before doing anything you want to do or try, researching is a crucial step. For shipping beer products, you should extend your research to answer certain questions about the state you want to ship to.
Research also includes getting to know your preferred courier and doing the required steps to qualify. Also, since beer is an alcoholic product, not every courier entertains beer shipping.
Tip 2: Opt for two-day delivery
While beer takes a long time to perish, it may still be subject to loss of freshness. Opting for this delivery ensures that your beer package arrives as soon as possible or within two business days. This way, your client can enjoy a cold and fresh pint of beer.
Tip 3: Remember to put fragile labels on your packages.
You should not overlook this when shipping beer and anything else that’s fragile. There’s a reason why these labels or stickers exist: for the parcel to be transported carefully by the delivery service.
Tip 4: Always insulate
As beer products are fragile, it’s vital to ensure they are well-insulated. This is where newspapers, bubble wraps, and box inserts prove essential.
Tip 5: Hot temperature is a no-go
Beers are best kept cold and should be stored in a cool place. When exposed to so much heat, the beer may spoil. And so, you would want to keep beer deliveries to a minimum throughout the summer. Even when appropriately packed, scorching weather can still affect the insides of the package.
Tip 6: Be eco-friendly
Packing requires too much plastic and unnecessary paper use, and packing beer is no better. So, instead of buying new materials, you can reuse some used cardboard or newspaper as a filler inside the box.
FAQs About Shipping Beer
Is shipping beer costly?
There is no exact answer to this question, but there are two essential things to consider: quantity and location. Of course, shipping a considerable amount of beer would be more expensive than sending just a bottle or two. On the other hand, the price of shipping beer to the closest city will be different from shipping it to a further one.
Is It Possible to Ship Beer to Other Countries?
Yes, beer can be shipped throughout the world except, of course, for places where it’s not legal. In fact, shipping internationally is easier. Prices may differ per location, but they are typically less expensive too.
Is it imperative to use the recommended couriers?
Of course, connecting with a trusted courier service is important. These companies also provide insurance and security, so you feel that your product is safer in their hands.
If you have a brewery or are planning to send a gift to a loved one who likes beer, it’s important to learn how to ship beer. It’s more challenging than you think, but diving deeper will be worth it. For businesses, it’s a great way to expand the market and introduce your tasty brews to the world.
As a homebrewer, Michael would get frustrated about the lack of brewing information on the internet. After hundreds of gallons of spoilt batches, Micheal had enough. And he founded Unknown Brewing as a resource for homebrewers.