Canadian Packaging

Better with Age

By Myles Shane   

Ontario whisky producer hits its stride in the global marketplace with superior craftmanship and bespoke packaging to match

As one of those products that only get better with age, the future looks bright for a Canadian-made whisky brand making big waves in the global marketplace for premium-quality distilled spirits.

Founded in 1992 in Grimsby, Ont., Forty Creek is a renowned Canadian whisky brand that has gained widespread recognition for its exceptional craftsmanship and distinctive flavour profiles.

The company was founded by John Hall, a former winemaker who brought his expertise and passion for creating premium spirits to the world of whisky.

Over the years, Forty Creek has gained a massive loyal following, while earning and numerous accolades and awards for its high-quality whiskies.

The company’s core product range includes much-beloved offerings like the Forty Creek Barrel Select, which is a flagship blend known for its smoothness and versatility, and Forty Creek Copper Bold, a rich and robust whisky with well-balanced layers of flavour.

In 2014, Forty Creek caught the attention of Campari Group, an Italian spirits company known for its world-class portfolio of iconic spirit brands.

Campari Group recognized the quality and potential of Forty Creek and acquired the company—providing it with a wider platform for growth and global distribution.

To foster that growth, Forty Creek recently collaborated with Ariva, Mississauga, Ont.-based supplier of sustainable paper-based packaging solutions boasting globally-recognized FSC (Forest Stewardship Council), SFI (Sustainable Forestry Initiative) and PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certifications) certifications for the environmentally responsible sourcing of its raw materials.

Operating as a business unit of leading Canadian paper maker Domtar Corporation, Ariva has evolved and adapted to changing market dynamics and customer demand over the years.

By continuously demonstrating a strong commitment to providing innovative solutions and exceptional service to its customers, with a focus on meeting the ever-changing needs of businesses, Ariva has positioned itself as a trusted partner in the paper packaging industry.

Greg Teskey, a seasoned sales representative at Ariva, plays a crucial role in cultivating strong partnerships with the company’s esteemed clientele.

With an impressive tenure of over 20 years, Greg efficiently manages a diverse group of customers, providing comprehensive support for their business and their paper-related requirements.

In the context of Ariva’s collaboration with Forty Creek’s online store, Teskey sheds light on the packaging solutions that Ariva has recently provided for the new Forty Creek Box Set kit.

This innovative packaging solution, lauded for its versatility and retro appeal, was designed to cater to various campaigns, gift occasions, and even cocktail kits.

With the objective to develop an aesthetically pleasing box that could serve multiple purposes, Ariva recognized the potential of this box to house a bottle of a Forty Creek brand whisky alongside two classy whisky tasting glasses.

Recently, Teskey took time to discuss Ariva’s involvement in the development of the premium-quality bespoke packaging solution.

“Ariva played an active role in developing custom corrugated packaging solutions tailored specifically to meet Forty Creek’s unique requirements,” Teskey told Canadian Packaging in a recent interview.

“These solutions encompassed critical aspects such as size, colour, internal fitting, printing, and the exchange of innovative ideas,” Teskey says, adding that the creative process for designing the new custom packaging was a close collaborative effort between Ariva and Campari’s creative team.

As Teskey relates, “While the initial ideas originated from Campari, Ariva’s extensive expertise played a significant role in shaping the final packaging masterpiece.

“This involved meticulous considerations, such as determining the appropriate size and dimensions, ensuring product thickness and corrugate strength, and exploring captivating printing concepts that aligned seamlessly with Forty Creek’s brand identity.”

Reflecting on the collaboration, Teskey highlights one of the primary challenges Ariva encountered while working with Forty Creek.

“They emphasized the importance of addressing environmental impact, enhancing the visual appeal of the packaging, safeguarding the products, and ensuring their safe arrival at the final destination,” Teskey relates. “However, what held the utmost significance for them was creating a positive and memorable experience for the end users, thereby solidifying brand loyalty.

“To address these priorities, we provided samples and prototypes, allowing them to physically visualize, touch, and conduct shipping tests on our proposed concepts.”

As Teskey explains, Ariva offers an extensive range of packaging products designed to cater to diverse needs.

The company’s comprehensive inventory includes a wide selection of stocked options alongside customizable solutions, including corrugated cartons, sealing tapes, protective packaging materials such as Bubble Wrap, paper rolls and foam rolls, as well as pallet wrap, shrink films, strapping, padded mailers, and much more.

As Teskey points out, “Leveraging our expertise and extensive resources, Ariva delivers tailor-made packaging solutions that enhance operational and financial performance for our esteemed partners.”

All in all, the future outlook looks very promising for Forty Creek, as the brand continues to evolve and captivate whisky enthusiasts with exceptional product offerings, along with attention-grabbing packaging.

And with the backing of Campari Group, the stalwart Canadian distiller will have access to enhanced resources and global distribution capabilities that will allow it to expand its presence in international markets to reach a wider audience of whisky lovers worldwide.


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Category Captains 2024