1996 – Introduction of Handicasks – Making light of a heavy job

Rolling out the barrel at a Selby area brewery is no big deal. Lightweight casks are set to revolutionise the licensed delivery trade.

Snaith-based Old Mill Brewery pioneered the non-returnable Handicask to guarantee supply within three days to any landlord nationwide.

Back-breaking barrels, worth more than the ale inside and hard to recover from widespread pubs, have been replaced by lightweight models.cThe plastic prototype means the word of the independent brewery’s beers can spread far and wide from the 200-year old former corn mill and clog factory.

The Handicask weighs less than 2kg and landlords are united in their views on the ease of cellar organisation. When empty the casks can either be returned for recycling or kept for a wide variety of uses. The non-returnable Handicask also eliminates the problem of theft, which has become a major bottom-line headache for the whole brewing industry since the advent of the steel keg.

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