Caleno sustainable drinks brand

In Conversation With… Caleño Drinks

In Partners by Polly Hughes

We chatted to the lovely Ellie Webb, Founder of Caleño, to learn more about the inspiration behind her non-alcoholic drinks brand, what sustainability means to her and why Flexi-Hex has been a game-changer for their business.

Caleño was inspired by flavours of Latin America – can you tell us more about the drink and the brand’s history?

Caleño was born out of a personal frustration of mine. During January 2017, I took part in Dry January and on a night out with friends, I was disappointed with the offering of non-alcoholic drinks outside the soft drink ranges. After taking some time travelling in my Mum’s homeland, Colombia, I realised how intensely positive and joyful the people were, and how they loved to party, and this culture was what I wanted to bring back to the UK through Caleño.

In 2019, Caleño launched with our original distillation 'Light & Zesty', a tropical, citrus and spiced blend featuring the iconic South American Inca berry and fast forward to 2020, we launched our second variant 'Dark & Spicy', which is a golden and spicy blend, packed with dark pineapple tropical notes, ginger and kola nut spices.

Your brand is full of vibrancy and fun, what other values do you embrace?

The inspiration for the brand is the joyful culture of Colombia, everything from the colours and vibrancy to the tropical ingredients in our spirits. However, we don’t want to just be a fun brand, we want to ensure that our brand and products are available to all, so it’s important to us to make the brand accessible. We want to ensure that everything we do is simple; you will find all our cocktails can be made simply at home. Finally, we pride ourselves on our customer experience. From first impression to the end result of unboxing our product, we’ve put in the effort to ensure it’s the most joyful experience for the customer.

Ellie Webb Founder of Caleno drinks

What does sustainability mean to you personally?

As a business owner, I realise that growing a product business increasingly has an impact on the environment and world around us, and therefore we have a duty to behave responsibly and find ways in which to reduce and minimise any negative impacts. For me that means not taking shortcuts, not going for the cheapest, easiest solutions and thinking sustainably and responsibly about how we develop our business over the long term. We are still a very young business, but sustainable practices will always help support our decision making. It’s important to us, and it's most definitely important to our customers.

"Choosing Flexi-Hex has been a game-changer as it’s allowed us to be more flexible in our overall packaging solution...."

Caleno drinks in Flexi-Hex packaging

What were the biggest challenges you faced when it came to bottle packaging and why did you choose Flexi-Hex?

As a brand that sells and sends out glass bottles, packaging has always been extremely important to ensure the safe arrival of our products, whilst also maintaining a simple process for the customer. Choosing Flexi-Hex has been a game-changer as it’s allowed us to be more flexible in our overall packaging solution, and ultimately, has provided us with a safe and reliable option that fits perfectly with our bottles.

What brands inspire you and why?

I’m currently reading about the rise of Nike, and that story is particularly inspiring as it was built by a founder and team who were passionate about athletics, sports and making running more accessible to more people. That’s what we’re trying to do with alcohol-free drinks. Our aim is to make the ‘act of drinking’ one that isn’t filled with one-way choices and inaccessibility but is truly focused on delivering a joyful drinking experience for everyone.

Caleno sustainable drinks brand