New Printed Can Minimums

As the 2022 quickly approaches, many companies are looking forward to the New Year.  One of the world’s largest aluminum can suppliers just shocked the craft beer market and has made many breweries start scrambling to find a solution after their recent announcement.

During the final quarter of the year, can manufacturer Ball Corp. started informing breweries across that country that their minimum orders will be increased at the start of 2022.  They will require non-contract customers to order five truckloads per SKU.  This is up drastically from their previous minimum of one truckload per SKU.  Many of these non-contract customers include small and regional breweries.  In addition to the new minimum quantities, non-contracted customers will no longer be able to store excess cans in their warehouses.

Now with printed cans becoming potentially more difficult to obtain for small and medium-sized breweries, we believe that craft brewers will start looking more towards using labels on cans.

Labels on cans may seem like a step down from printed cans, but they are a great way to get your cans to pop in stores and the cost advantages are easy to realize.  Find out more about the differences between labels, shrink sleeves and printed cans here.

If you need more information about printing labels or for pricing, contact one of our label experts at Lauterbach Group at 262-820-8123 or email


Cover Up Those Obsolete Cans

Shrink Sleeves

Due to a low aluminum can supply in the post-COVID beverage marketplace, beverage manufacturers like our brewery customers are finding it hard to get their products canned.

Do you have printed cans for obsolete products that you are not able to use?

Perfect!  The answer is shrink wrap labels!

Depending on your operation and output needs, getting into shrink sleeves can cost less than you may think.  We own equipment made by Accraply for converting our printed film to shrink wrap rolls and they also make shrink applicators and heat tunnels.  Shrink wrap sleeves can cover your old obsolete printed cans with 360 degrees of new product markings, reusing those old cans so you can stop spending all of your time trying to procure new aluminum cans and focus your time on making great beverages and putting them in consumers’ hands.

Need help with getting into shrink or want a quote for shrink sleeves?  Give us a call at 262-820-8123 or email us.  We absolutely love printing beverage labels and shrink and have some really cool capabilities with our state-of-the-art presses.


Shrink Sleeve
Here you can see the subtle difference between a gloss and matte finish


Common Shrink Material

Shrink Wrapped Can

Probrew Can

Shrink sleeving is a heat activated conforming label product.  It is widely used to attain 360 degree full container coverage without direct container printing.  This allows better cycling of packaging inventory at a lower cost.  There are multiple materials available to create the sleeves that best suit a product.

PVC- Polyvinyl Chloride

This is the least expensive option and most used (an estimated 70%) of shrink materials.  It’s best characteristic is that it has great control during the shrinking process, shrinking up to 64% at a low temperature between 122-140° F.  It offers decent clarity and scuff resistance but is the least environmentally friendly option. This material is used a lot in tamper-evident bands.

PETG HS-LV – Polypropylene Terephthalate Glycol

PETG combines high density and strength with high shrinking capability of up to 78% at temperatures of 158-176° F.  This material creates the highest quality clarity, gloss, scuff resistance, and heat resistance of all of the shrink materials.  With growing popularity, this material has become commonly used in the beverage industry.  It also maintains excellent recyclability.

OPS- Oriented Polystyrene

OPS Film generally is used in squeezable packaging.  Shrinking up to 75%, it has the lowest vertical shrink of the shrink films allowing for a very consistent and soft finish.  It has the highest yield savings vs. PETG and PVC.

PLA- Polylactide

PLA is a renewable film made from corn and plant-based resources, allowing it to be biodegradable.  This prevents recyclability but maintains environmental benefits.  It shrinks up to 72% and is FDA approved for direct food contact.  PLA is very rigid and brittle and can be the most difficult of the options to handle.

Similar to our pressure sensitive labels, we can also apply specialty varnishes on to shrink film in order to obtain a tactile or unique touch and feel on your product (see our raised varnish and spot varnish posts).

For more information about shrink or print capabilities on your product, contact us at the Lauterbach Group.


Shrink Sleeve and Labels vs. Printed Cans

Canned Wine, Beer and Specialty Drink:
Shrink Sleeves and Pressure Sensitive Labels vs. Printed Cans

Customers that are interested in 360° top-to-bottom graphics on cans for wine, beer or specialty drinks have three labeling options:

Printed Cans
Shrink Sleeves or

Printed cans have a high minimum order requirement -100,000 cans at a time, longer lead times – 12 weeks, and can be more expensive for small to mid-size producers who are not buying truckload quantities of a single version. Given the setup charges for art, version charges and split shipment charges for printed cans, it is not always the best choice for brands that want more flexibility with their design, and faster print-to-market solutions, and better graphic and decoration quality.

Shrink sleeves and pressure sensitive labels allow brands to trial different designs in the marketplace easily, add fun and eye catching designs to draw product attention on the shelf, and do so with very short lead-times to react to market needs. They also lower overall cost.


Shrink sleeve and pressure sensitive labels provide the ability to print only what is needed and when it is needed. They also provide the highest quality graphics, shelf value-add and product differentiation.

Our OmniMark Art Management System provides great flexibility to change or upgrade designs literally real-time providing speed to market opportunities. Why wait 4 to 6 weeks to get a design, when you could have it in days?

With shrink sleeve and pressure sensitive labels, clients do not have to invest in vast warehouse space dedicated to printed cans which consume expensive warehouse costs, get damaged through warehousing and material movement and become obsolete as designs change.


Shrink sleeve and pressure sensitive labels provide exceptional print quality. Vignettes, background screens, vivid colors and many decoration opportunities are available, from spot varnishes, soft touch varnishes, tactile print and varnish, as well as metallics.  We invest in state-of-art digital and flexo printing equipment to push the limits of print quality and creativity.

Ink that is printed directly on cans appears muted and hazy due to the gray metallic of the can showing through the ink. The print quality simply does not provide the necessary value and shelf appeal. Shrink sleeves and pressure sensitive labels ensure your graphics pop and help your product stand out on the shelf.

For more information or someone simply to help you navigate your can labeling needs, please give us a call at 262-820-8123 or email