BAIRDS MALT IS PLEASED TO ANNOUNCE FURTHER EXPANSION PLANS FOR OUR INVERNESS MALTINGS

Bairds and Fettercairn celebrate the 200 club

Bairds were privileged to recently celebrate the launch of the 200 Club with Fettercairn Whisky and Scotgrain Agriculture. The 200 Club was initially conceived as an idea between Bairds Commercial Director Eddie Douglas and Stewart Walker, distillery manager for Fettercairn. While visiting the distillery with Odell Brewing Co 3 years ago, Eddie had mentioned how […]
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On July 14, 2022

Bairds were privileged to recently celebrate the launch of the 200 Club with Fettercairn Whisky and Scotgrain Agriculture.

The 200 Club was initially conceived as an idea between Bairds Commercial Director Eddie Douglas and Stewart Walker, distillery manager for Fettercairn. While visiting the distillery with Odell Brewing Co 3 years ago, Eddie had mentioned how Bairds were able to trace the barley supplied to the distillery from farms within a local 50-mile radius of the distillery. “That was a surprise to the customers that we had been visiting the distillery with,” said Eddie, “but it highlights just how close the relationships are between the stages of the supply chain. As a critical centrepiece of the journey of the barley from seed to still, Bairds are proud to be able to enable and support those relationships.”

The 200 Club marks the first of future potential growers clubs, enabling distilling customers to have a clearer understanding of where their barley is being sourced from, and showing growers where their barley is going.

We want to enable people to see a deeper understanding of where the story of the barley begins, and to give due credit to the craftsmen who contribute to the final dram in the glass

“Barley has often been seen as a commodity product,” says Eddie. “We want to enable people to see a deeper understanding of where the story of the barley begins, and to give due credit to the craftsmen who contribute to the final dram in the glass.

For some, the distiller or the brewer working with our malt would be seen as the ‘craftsmen’ – as much as they are, if you want a quality end product, you need quality from the outset. Understanding the importance of quality barley allows us to value the work that has gone in to provide the malted barley for use in the end dram. The seed breeders and agronomists undertake years of work before a seed is sown, the growers then take that seed through to harvest before the maltsters apply their skill to ensure the best available quality malt for use by the distilleries. In total, we’d count 5 stages of craft.”

The 200 Club marks an exciting chapter for Fettercairn,  the distillery recently undertook the replanting of Fettercairn Forest, which held 13,000 sessile quercus petraea and quercus robur oak saplings planted next to the distillery which will support the long-term sustainability of the distillery.

Growers in attendance at the distillery were invited to sign a 200 Club cask, along with representatives of Fettercairn, Bairds, and Scotgrain. David Innes and his son Matthew are two of the members of the 200 Club and farm at Mains of Fordoun, in Aberdeenshire, Scotland.

David commented: “We’re pretty proud that we’re supplying to the distillery – it’s good to know that Fettercairn is using grain coming from the immediate area – true to its nature and the location. We love the idea that if you give someone a bottle of whisky, you can tell them you helped grow the barley. A lot of the time farmers like us don’t really know where our barley ends up – this completes the circle in a really pleasing way and we know we are supporting the local economy too.”

The 200 Club marks the first growers club for Bairds, with more partnerships in the pipeline. “We’re recognising the needs of customers,” said Eddie. “Our expansions in Scotland will help increase the volume that Scotland’s distilling customers are looking for, but we’re also looking to ensure that the value of quality malt can also be seen and that each of the craftsmen who contribute towards that final dram are celebrated along the way.”

As this season’s harvest draws nearer, it’s another opportunity for Bairds and Scotgrain to ensure we are safeguarding the future for the next generation of growers, maltsters, and distillers. Locally sourced grain and partnerships like The 200 Club underpin the industry and with our malting capacity expanding, Bairds Malt are in a prime position to support our customers needs.

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