By Stan Bush

DENVER (CBS4) – Craft breweries are looking at cans which are more than 2.5x the size of a normal beer because they see a ticket to prosperity.

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“As soon as we got this machine, our off premise beer sales doubled,” said Willy Truettner, co-owner of Zuni Street Brewing in Denver’s Highlands Neighborhood. “People we’re excited, and we are giving them a quality product.”

CBS4’s Stan Bush interviews Willie Truettner. (credit: CBS)

“Crowlers” are 32oz aluminum cans which brewers are now investing in heavily as a cost-effective way to get beer out of their breweries and into the hands of new customers.

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The products are serving as a lifeline to small neighborhood brewers, of which there are literally hundreds in Colorado, because beer making has a small profit margin and most marketing dollars are spent bringing people into the brewery.

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“What better way to get our name out than someone who shows up to a party with 8 of these things with all of our different beers in them for people to try?” asks Truettner.

But this potential leg up for small businesses is in jeopardy due to tariffs imposed by the Trump Administration, which is still holding a 10 percent fee on Canadian aluminum.

“If the actual vessel goes up, than certainly it will affect our business,” says Truettner. “We would see an increase and that would eventually pass onto the customer.”

(credit: CBS)

Canada has already cancelled a competing tariff on American aluminum as part of the new trade deal replacing NAFTA.

Brewers hope normalcy in American trade relations will give them a predictable marketplace.

Stan Bush is a general assignment reporter at CBS4. His stories can be seen on CBS4 News at 10. Read his bio and follow him on Twitter @StanBushTV.