Saltwater Brewery ‘Edible Six Pack Rings’ Case Study

Instead of investing in a low-budget promotional campaign, a craft brewer created Edible Six Pack Rings, attracting 110 million social media views and over 3.5 billion media impressions.


The Huffington Post:  “A craft beer company has brewed up a brilliant idea.”

CNN:  “Innovative and for the marine wildlife, life saving.”

Mashable:  “A very, very smart solution to a behavior problem.”

Time:  “Time to save the planet with a six pack.”

Saltwater is a small craft brewery from Del Ray Beach, Florida. It’s primary targets are surfers, fishermen, and people who love the sea.

That’s why instead of doing a low-budget campaign, we decided to make a statement, investing to create a replacement for plastic six-pack drinks, because most of them end up in the ocean.

Marine Biologist Mark Tokulka:  “Around the world, an estimated 1 million sea birds and 100,000 marine mammals and sea turtles become entrapped in plastic or ingest it and die.”

ABC Action News:  “A lot of people think just cutting up the old plastic six-pack holders is enough, but experts say wildlife will still eat the little pieces of plastic, killing them.”

Q13 Fox:  “A Florida brewery is changing up the six-pack in hopes of the lives of animals.”

CNN:  “They’re finding a way to put an end to these old plastic holders.”

Saltwater Brewery presents edible six-pack rings, a six-pack ring that feeds animals instead of killing them.”

Q13 Fox:  “This is such a cool idea. Now, the holder is actually crafted from the byproducts that are made in the brewing process. Look at that. It is 100% biodegradable.”

Immediately, people embraced the idea, and the media reacted in a massive way.

Media:  “Edible six-pack rings that feed instead of kill marine life, if they end up in the ocean.”

With zero media dollars invested, in less than five days, edible six-pack rings took over social media with over 105 million views and over 1.8 million Facebook shares. We got over 3.5 billion global impressions, transforming a small brewery into a beacon for the industry to follow, and challenging the big guys to save hundreds of thousands of marine lives.

Chris Grove, President, Saltwater Brewery:  “We want to influence the big guys and kind of inspire them to also get on board.”

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Saltwater Brewery Case Study Notes

Saltwater Brewery’s Edible Six Pack Rings were the first ever 100% biodegradable, compostable and edible packaging implemented in the beer industry. The rings, made from wheat and barley waste, are natural byproducts of the beer-making process.

Background:  Plastic pollution, including beer six pack rings, poses a serious threat to wildlife, both via potential entanglement and death by hunger (as the digestive systems of wildlife get clogged by plastic). 80% of sea turtles and 70% of seabirds ingest plastic, according to Greenpeace.

Solution:  Saltwater Brewery’s Edible Six Pack Rings are made with materials that feed, instead of kill, wildlife. By using byproducts of the beer brewing process, the packaging goes beyond recycling and strives to achieve zero waste.

Promotion:  After consumer launch events at the brewery, Saltwater’s president used Facebook to inform his network of craft brewers, asking them to spread the word. There were 500 shares in the first hour. Saltwater then followed with an email to 100 journalists, bloggers and influencers who had covered similar stories in the past year.

Audience Targets:

  • eco-conscious consumers (“fishermen, surfers, and people that love the sea”)
  • fellow craft brewers
  • environmental journalists

Call-to-Action: “Help a local brewery challenge the establishment with a powerful, eco-friendly idea.”

Results:  Prior to the cause marketing campaign, Saltwater Brewery was known exclusively to local patrons in Del Ray Florida, a town of 60,000 people. With $0 media invested and in less than 5 days:

  • 110 million social media views
  • over 1.9 million Facebook shares
  • 1.3 million Facebook likes
  • over 3.5 billion global impressions about the campaign
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