Distilleries ready to raise a toast and go green following £9m grant


World-renowned whisky and spirit producers from Orkney to Cornwall are set to toast an almost £9m cash boost announced by the government over the weekend that will drive forward plans to create low-carbon green distilleries.

Having already received collective funding of more than £1m to kick-start green innovation projects,12 distilleries across Scotland and 5 in England can now bid for further grants of up to £3m, totalling almost £9m.

The grants will support successful distilleries to accelerate projects that decarbonise their production processes, which typically rely on fossil fuels, helping prevent pollution equivalent to the annual carbon dioxide emissions of Norwich.

In the first phase of funding, distilleries received up to £75,000, helping them boost decarbonisation research and development, with schemes including the use of hydrogen and biofuel boilers and geothermal energy in their production processes.

Projects that have already received funding include the Uist Distilling Company on the Isle of South Uist using low-carbon hydrogen as a heat source, Bruichladdich Distillery developing a boiler system that emits no greenhouse gases or pollutants on the isle of Islay and Orkney’s Highland Park Distillery using stored energy from green renewable sources that can be converted into heat on demand.

Energy Minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan said: “From whisky and gin to rum and vodka, the UK’s distilleries are famous around the world for their innovation, and it is great to see them use this to get into the spirit of going green. The funding announced today will support one of our most iconic industries to go further and faster in cutting their carbon emissions and build back greener – something we can all raise a toast to.”