It seems like just yesterday you could only find our beer on draught. For those who don’t know, we waited 10 years to start bottling and 15 years to start canning all thanks to our Brewery Founder, Bill Cherry’s borderline obsession with quality and consistency. He refused to jump into that world until there was production equipment available that could stand up to our exacting standards. Cut to 2018 where we finally installed our newest pride and joy, a canning line from our friends at KHS.
It’s been a year since we added cans to the Switchback family and, truthfully, we’ve never looked back. Switchback Ale tastes just as great in cans as it does in bottles or on draught – its original form, thanks to our canning line. So what makes our line so special? There are many features of our line that contribute to low oxygen levels in the cans, which in turn, preserves the quality of our beer. First, each can is conveyed into the filler and sealed to one of twenty-one fill heads where it goes through a multi-step carbon dioxide (CO2) flushing process to purge it of oxygen (beer’s worst enemy). Then it’s pressurized with CO2 and filled with beer. An electromagnetic inductive flow meter ensures that exactly 16 oz. of ice cold, tasty beer makes it into each can. Next the can is released from its filling head and sent down the line where a “bubble breaker” shoots more CO2 over the beer to prevent oxygen ingress. Lastly, the can enters the seamer where the tops (or ends in industry lingo) are sealed to the cans. And just to make sure we keep all of those pesky oxygen molecules out, we do one more burst of CO2 under the end right before it is placed on the can.
We’re so excited that cans have become a staple in the Switchback lineup. We hope you’ve been enjoying both their quality and versatility as much as we’ve been this summer! Be sure to tag your social media photos of our Switchback cans using hashtag, #switchbackbeer, and who knows, we may just re-post it!