A blog all about ‘Beer Mats’

All about beermats, dripmats and coasters!

Free beermats for UK pub landlords

Nothing in the world is free, or so the saying goes, but a UK based beermat manufacturer has just turned this concept on it’s head by offering free beermats for landlords of public houses in the UK. Yes licensees can now register to receive free beermats.

With the average public house consuming more than 1000 beer mats a month and the major breweries reducing the number of beermats available to landlords, this is likely to be welcomed. UK beermat manufacturer Thirstys, has launched a programme allowing landlords or licensees to register for free beermats. Working hand in glove with companies seeking to promote their products, messages or brand, Thirstys will distribute free beer mats to participating landlords.

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3 July, 2008 Posted by | News | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What is a BeerMat?

A beermat is a coaster used to rest glasses of beer or other beverages upon. They are used to protect the surfaces and because they are made of highly absorbent pulp board, they are used to absorb spillages. Of course, they only became mainstream once the major breweries recognised the benefit of advertising their range of beers, spirits or other alcoholic drinks on these beermats.

Beermats are widely used in UK public houses, with the average pub consuming around 1000 mats per month. In the past 10 years, new manufacturing processes have been introduced by the more ‘forward thinking’ manufacturer of beermats, whereby beermats can be designed, manufactured and printed in far smaller volumes, permitting many other businesses and organisations to benefit from the low cost, high impact offered by advertising on beermats.

For example, in the UK, one of the political parties, UKIP, utilised beermats to deliver their political messages during the 2004 elections. Similarly, the UK Police force have used them for anti-drink driving campaigns and local authorities for delivering messages related to recycling…in the latter case, the local authorities wanted to ensure that the beermat itself could be recycled, which of course, it could.

Their are alternative names or spellings to describe beermats, often spelt as beer mats, or referred to as dripmats (also, drip mats),  and in the United States and many other places they are invariably referred to as coasters. Whatever the preferred method used to describe these products, the reality is, there are probably as many “beermats” printed with non alcohol related messages on them as there are with a beer or spirit.

One word of caution though, there are an increasing number of companies using the generic term ‘beermats’ to sell inferior or fake products, depending on your view. A genuine beermat will be made out of the highly absorbent pulpboard and will typically be between 1mm and 1.6mm thick. The “fakes” are more often than not, constructed by printing onto paper and then mounting on board. The absorbency of these types of constructions is highly questionable, as of course is the durability…perhaps even worse, is they are often more expensive than traditional beermats!

3 July, 2008 Posted by | General | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Collecting Beer Mats – Tegestology

Tegestology is a Latin term defined as the practice of ‘collecting beermats or coasters’, with collectors known as tegestologists . Typically testologists will concentrate on historical or social changes within specific time frames, designs, topics, use and of course the engineering processes used in their production. Many of these collectors will have huge collections and many of them spend a great deal of time exchanging series mats, swapping information sources and there is also a brisk trade in the re-sale of specific beermats.

Testologists will also collect beermats with spelling errors, which are particularly sought after, as well as those printed in different languages and those used to ‘proof’ the print priot to going to press.

Ian Calvert published a book in 2006 titled A Guide to Collecting Beermats and this is an excellent resource for experienced testologists or those that want to join the club as a serious collector. There are also a number of websites devoted to testologists, these would include the British Beermat Collectors Society, as well as the International Collectors Association, based in Germany. There are also, amongst others, two based in Australia, these are the ‘South Australian Coaster Collectors Club’ and the ‘New South Wales Coaster Collectors Club’.

Some beermat manufacturers have sections within their websites specifically aimed at beermat collectors, some include links to the testologists own websites and many beermat manufacturers will happily provide samples to collectors.

3 July, 2008 Posted by | General | , , , , | Leave a comment

Finally, an online store selling pre-printed beermats!

Well not everyone has the time or inclination to have their own beermats printed, no matter how easy the process or inexpensive. We often need someone to do the thinking for us and why not?

A new online retailer has jost gone live, The Beermat Inn, offering a range of pre-printed beermats, all categorised to make selection an absolute breeze. They have put a lot of thought into the designs and the messages and by all accounts, the range is going to expand every week, so there is every reason to go back on a regular basis. Smart, yes? They also have a ‘wish list’ form, so visitors can tell them what sort of beermats they want in the future.

The pre-printed beermats offer a wide range of messages and topics. From Birthdays, through to weddings, anniversaries and other annual events such as Christmas and Halloween. There is a fun side and a serious side. For example, they have pre-printed beermats that offer sales messages, customer service messages and even life-saving tips, such as what to do with someone that has had a suspected heart attack, electric shock or in unconscious. So, all in all, quite useful.

For businesses, they have common ‘health & safety’ messages printed on the beermats, sales or closing tips for companies in the sales business and even tips, advice of just good practice for customer service people taking calls everyday, with their trusty mug of tea in front of them!

So, if you haven’t got the time or inclination to have your own mats printed, then why not take a look, if nothing else, it may provide you with the inspiration for your own range of beer mats.

3 July, 2008 Posted by | News | , , , , , | Leave a comment

What is beermat board?

Beermat board is produced from wood-pulp. The pulp is normally constructed from a mix of already recycled paper pulp (about 85%) and Scandinavian indigenous softwood. The softwood is typically purchased from forests that adhere to the ‘sustainable forestry program’ where more trees are planted than are felled.

This pulp is light brown in colour and unsuitable for printing purposes so a final sheet of chlorine-free bleached paper tops the bulk.

3 July, 2008 Posted by | General | , , , , | Leave a comment

Beer mats and the environment

Did you know that genuine beermats are 100% recyclable? That’s right, albeit the emphasis must be on “genuine”. Ask any beermat collector, enthusiast or professional buyer and they will tell you that ‘real’ beermats are made out of pulp board…and this is why they they can be recycled.

However, if you care about the environment, then you must beware of the fakers, these are the guys that call it a beermat, when really is is nothing more than a printed piece of paper that is glued to a piece of board! That is correct…not only is it a fake which cannot be recycled, but it is also useless as a beer mat. Why? Because it lacks the absorbency of a genuine pulp board beermat.

So, next time you are looking for an environmentally friendly way of delivering your advertising message, spare a moment for the humble beermat, but make sure it is a genuine pulp board beermat, available from the manufacturers.

3 July, 2008 Posted by | Common Uses | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment