By Barbara Barrielle
Liviri, a 2020 WINnovation Award winner
From the people that brought Otter Products to the protection of fragile cell phones comes a new concept in wine delivery, Liviri Vino.
Always interested in pushing the envelope in durable protection for those things that are precious to us, Otter Products’ Liviri Vino was conceived when Otter employees met to discuss future strategies and noted that there were many wine deliveries coming to their Fort Collins office in a variety of shipping boxes.
“When we were in development of our Liviri Fresh shipping cooler, which was designed to reduce single use packaging waste and safely ship meal kits and specialty perishables, our product management team began to look for other industries that had similar packaging and shipping pain points.” say Brian Jacoby, Liviri Senior Vice President of Global Development. “Several members of the team personally had experienced the difficulty of shipping wine in the summer and winter months. This helped us connect the dots on a major pain point that has always plagued the wine industry. Wineries have adopted inefficient, manual work-arounds to safely ship wine including checking weather before shipping and holding wine if the weather was too hot or too cold since there was not a good alternative.”
Liviri Vino developed a solution that addresses packaging sustainability while also protecting cargo from weather. The Liviri Vino four or six pack durable and reusable shippers, have interiors designed like honeycombs with inserts to keep wine at the optimum temperature.
The wine is delivered to the customer with instructions to “take the wine, leave the package” and then the empty Liviri Vino container is picked up by FedEx or UPS and returned to the shipper, winery or shipping company, to be used again. Liviri boxes can be expected to last about two years and can be shipped dozens of times, greatly decreasing the waste created by shipping materials. In addition, the wine does not have to be shipped overnight, the cooler protects the wine for up to five days, so it can go ground or comparable – thereby cutting down significantly on shipping costs.
“After talking with many wineries and premium wine fulfillment houses it became apparent the Liviri Vino could provide a lot of value, not only because it allowed wineries to safely ship wine year round,” says Jacoby, “but also since sustainability is important to the wine industry and they are actively looking for ways to reduce their use of styrofoam and single use packaging.”
If used correctly, the conservative lifespan of a Liviri box at two years can cut shipping container costs down to roughly $4.60 per use all while meeting the wine industry’s goals of sustainability. The list price of a Liviri Vino is $229.99 but the company offers customized pricing options for differing wine business needs. In addition, Liviri has partnerships with FedEx and UPS that include non-corrugated packaging fee waivers and flat rate return shipping. As Liviri Vino is phased into the fine wine shipping business, the benefits may far outweigh the initial cost outlets.
One of the early adopters of the Liviri Vino shipping container and system is the famed Bulgheroni Winery in Napa where Cabernet Sauvignon costs several hundreds of dollars.
“We make exceptional Cabernet, that’s what we’re about. Upon discovering the Liviri container, we got quite excited. The biggest challenge for us in the wine industry is, how do we get our bottle of wine from our wine cellar to the consumer in the best shape possible?” recounts Michael Ploetz, Estate Director for Alejandro Bulgheroni Napa Valley.
“Previously, before the Liviri Vino container, we used cardboard or Styrofoam and single use ice packs that were all designed to try to protect something very special as it moves across the country. And unfortunately, no matter what you do with cardboard and those ice packs, typically the results are mixed. When we discovered this container, we realized the potential; the thermal stability allows our precious cargo of wine that we put so much effort and love into, to reach our clients in the best shape possible, while also meeting a goal of sustainability.”
Launched in March of 2020, Liviri Vino entered the market as the Coronavirus was about to wreak havoc on the economy, but also accelerate the shipping of wine. Nearly one million more cases of wine were shipped in the first half of 2020 compared to 2019, a trend that’s unlikely to diminish, and a necessity for many wineries to survive, which only makes the benefits of Liviri Vino more pertinent.
“Throughout 2020, the entire wine industry has been faced with many unforeseen challenges. To the credit of wineries and shipping partners, they have continued to persevere and do everything possible to accommodate their Consumers requests in remarkable fashion.” says Jacoby. “Now more than ever, a focus on cost-to-serve and the ability to ship anytime, anywhere resonates with the entire industry. Liviri continues to consult with partners and provide solutions that go beyond just packaging, and reaching far into supporting the entire consumer experience.”