A business plan aimed at making the craft beer industry more efficient, while lowering costs has taken out the lucrative RMIT University 2012 Business Plan Competition (worth AU$25,000 ) and The Litmus Group Environmental Sustainability Award (worth AU$5,000 ).

Known as Easy Keg the system aims to offer microbrewers and homebrewers a cheaper and more environmentally friendly alternative to the traditional keg and bottle systems in existence.

RMIT student Kelly Bosman, leader of the Keg King team behind the idea, says that the vote of confidence from the judging panel made up of independent industry and business leaders was a huge boost.

With the small brewery sector currently in a boom period there is a strong demand for affordable and environmentally friendly packaging to facilitate efficient distribution for microbreweries and allow homebrewers to switch from bottles to kegs with ease – something Bosman and her team were focused on.

“The $30,000 in prizes we have won in the RMIT Business Plan Competition will enable us to make our business dream a reality far sooner than we imagined,” she says.

The Easy Keg purports to be a cheaper, reusable and recyclable alternative to both stainless steel kegs and bottling. As such the system employs an outer PET shell with an inner liner to hold the beer. The concept presented in the awards also included the establishment of a network – not dissimilar to the gas bottle “Swap and Go” system – to allow kegs to be quickly and easily swapped and refilled.

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