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Isaac Showaki: Managing craft brewing production

July 21, 2022
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Isaac Showaki – Octopi Brewing

After moving to Madison in 2014, Isaac Showacki started Octopi, one of the Midwest’s largest contract brewers.

About Octopi

Octopi is the leading contract beverage facility in the Midwest. They go beyond making great products; they’re also committed to seeing their clients’ brands grow. Their facility is located in Waunakee and was built to cater specifically to the needs of the modern beverage client.

CAN YOU TALK BRIEFLY ABOUT YOUR ROAD TO WISCONSIN? WHAT EVENTUALLY BROUGHT YOU TO OUR STATE?

I went to Boston University and eventually opened my first craft brewery in Chicago, where I met my now wife. We moved to Madison in April 2014 for my wife’s job, and now it is our forever home and where I started my company, Octopi.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PART ABOUT BEING A WISCONSIN RESIDENT?

I love the access to great talent here. We have some of the best brewers in the world.

BRIEFLY DESCRIBE WHAT OCTOPI DOES AS THE MIDWEST’S LEADING CONTRACT BREWERY.

At Octopi, we serve as a one-stop shop for both established beverage companies looking to expand volume and new brands considering entering the market. We manage beverage production for our clients so they can focus on innovation, marketing, and product sales.

ARE THERE ANY BREWING TRENDS THAT YOU AND OCTOPI SEE LEADING THE BEVERAGE INDUSTRY GOING FORWARD?

The beverage industry is reinventing itself every day. Within the last decade, we saw the craft-beer boom, the seltzer craze, and now a shift to low ABV beverages. Now, we’re seeing a real expansion in the co-packing industry and we anticipate it to continue growing for the foreseeable future.

CAN YOU TALK ABOUT YOUR PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE WITH WEDC?

In 2017, I was one of nine recipients to receive the MARKETPLACE Governor’s Award, which recognizes outstanding businesses owned by minorities, women, and service-disabled veterans. It was a great honor.

WHAT WAS THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC LIKE FOR YOUR BUSINESS? HOW DID YOU PIVOT AND WAS IT SUCCESSFUL?

During the height of the pandemic, we launched a major expansion for Octopi. While it was a tough time for a lot of industries, including fellow breweries, we were fortunate enough to not experience the devastating effects of the pandemic.

WHAT EXCITES YOU THE MOST ABOUT THE WISCONSIN BUSINESS CLIMATE GOING FORWARD?

We are fortunate to be in Wisconsin, which is both a manufacturing and brewing hub. It allows us to recruit top area talent.

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