Cranberries

Capturing the imagination

​Kyrö Distillery Company’s Napue Gin has swiftly become a Nordic award-winning sensation. We take a look at how their market-shaping brand is supported by careful supplier selection.
7/2017 TEXT: IAN FENTON, PHOTOS: KATRI KAPANEN
In 2012, the founders of Kyrö Distillery company acknowledged that the market for premium spirits they wanted to tap in the Nordics did not really exist. After a year or two of fact-finding and research, the distillery was eventually set up in one of the founders’ home town of Isokyrö, on Finland’s west coast, and their first major product was launched: Napue Gin.

Napue Gin paperboard packaging

The Kyrö Distillery Company’s strong brand is the result of an intense cooperation with Helsinki-based brand design agency Werklig. Even in the beginning, ambitious targets were the order of the day.

“We knew the only way for the company to exist would be to change the way Finns consume alcohol, and create a market here for premium spirits,” says Mikko Koskinen, branding and gin, Kyrö Distillery. “This could only be done by building a brand strong enough to convince people to pay a premium for something that offers more than just a good-tasting liquid.”

Partners to match

As a young company whose brand attributes are crucially important to its business model, Kyrö has reason to be particularly attentive to its supply chain, and select its partners carefully. This figured strongly in their thinking when selecting a material for their new gift package, which debuted in the festive season of 2016.

“Kyrö was looking for a solution that would combine the themes of high quality and natural raw materials, simple design and simple technologies,” says account manager Rami Haapanen of Pyroll, the company which handled the package’s production – also in Finland. The material for the carton, N-microflute, was supplied to Pyroll by UK-based DS Smith Sheetfeeding. DS Smith Sheetfeeding, at Kettering in the UK, is specialized in producing Microflute corrugated materials, with wide range of material finishes, barriers and colours for direct offset printing and foiling. Among their stocked paper grades is also MetsäBoard Natural WKL Bright.

Napue Gin paperboard packaging
Ilkka Harju, head of design & innovation at Starcke, a Finnish company that provides special graphical effects for packaging, selected Metsä Board’s uncoated white kraftliner, MetsäBoard Natural WKL Bright, due to its natural, pure and tactile feel. A premium look for the package was achieved by using the paperboard both as a fluting and linerboard. The outcome is a simple, pure and eye-catching white box upon which all the texts are stamped with black or silver foil.

One brand colour, tellingly, was left out of the package: gold. Koskinen is tight-lipped about the details, but lets slip that it is reserved for their upcoming rye whisky, to be unveiled in the coming months.

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