Edinburgh’s Bellfield Brewery — exclusively gluten-free and vegan — is ringing in the changes with bold new branding, investment in production equipment, and an all-weather beer garden at its brewery taproom near the city centre.

Bellfield Taproom
The Bellfield Taproom

Bellfield’s new branding was launched this week and is designed to give the brewery stand-out in the on-trade and retail sectors. 

Masterminded by Thirst Craft, in Glasgow, the new branding is also intended to help Bellfield gain new listings, boost exports, and extend its range by facilitating smaller volumes of new products and seasonal specials. 

The new branding references the brewery’s ‘free from’ credentials but does so obliquely — the new strapline is ‘For the Free’ — to increase its appeal to the full spectrum of craft beer drinkers. Craft beer as a category continues to grow strongly.

The launch is being supported by a TV advertising campaign that goes to air for two weeks from 10th August. The TV ad was produced in collaboration with Edinburgh agency, Gerry Farrell Ink, local animator and filmmaker, Ross Hogg, and with music from Jacuzzi General, of Paradise Palms Records.   

Since starting up in 2015, Bellfield has created ten jobs in four years at the brewery’s home in Abbeyhill. It is now planning a strong comeback after a challenging period due to the pandemic.

When lockdown started in late March, the brewery lost 95% of its on-trade sales overnight, but it managed to quickly pivot to online sales, enjoying a dramatic increase in sales from customers in Scotland and across the UK via their online store at bellfieldbrewery.com.

Bellfield opened a new beer garden in July that features a series of outdoor booths, each separated from the one next door with acrylic panels, to facilitate socially-distanced drinking while keeping the friendly feel of a pub. The brewery is also investing in additional vessels to further enhance its production capacity.

‘Our ambition is to lead the way in brewing award-winning beers that everyone can drink’

Chief executive, Alistair Brown, said that the investment was being made, in part, to sustain the recent, dramatic growth in online sales, as well as gaining new export listings. Bellfield already exports to Italy, Malta, Switzerland, UAE and Singapore.

He said: “We’re working hard to grow our business, in the UK and internationally, to become a premium-positioned beer brand. We’ll be investing heavily in [above and below the line] marketing to raise awareness and to win more listings and export sales.

“Our new brewhouse and further planned investment in production kit allows us to scale up production, to meet demand in the UK and overseas.

“The new branding and packaging builds on our heritage, while its impactful design reflects our beers and the spirit of the business. It also reflects our ambition to lead the way in brewing award-winning beers that everyone can drink — all our beers  are vegan and gluten-free, hence our new strapline, For The Free.”

Looking ahead to 2021, and as restrictions ease further, Bellfield hopes to get back to hosting brewery tours and tastings, as well as events at its brewery and taproom in Abbeyhill. To date, this has included music, quiz nights, comedy shows, food and drink pairings, street food pop-ups, and private events, and moving forward will include an arts-based programme, The Bellfield Sessions.

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