Glengoyne is a distillery that’s all about taking its time. This not only relates to how the team make their single malt whiskies, but also their custodianship of the land around them. Glengoyne believes in preserving its environment to ensure that it can be enjoyed by generations to come – along with its whisky, of course!
At the end of a distillation run there’s always liquid left over, known as the spent lees. This can’t just be poured away, and has to be treated before it can be returned to the water table. Rather than outsourcing this job, Glengoyne filters its lees through 12 reed beds in its own wetlands before allowing it to rejoin the local burn. Not only does this mean that the distillery’s waste output is reduced by about 25% and it uses less energy to manage it, but the wetlands also provide a haven for wildlife and encourage biodiversity.
Glengoyne is the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust’s official whisky partner, and has supported many of its campaigns and projects over the past decade, including investment in their Wetlands Can! campaign, which aims to develop 100 hectares of wetlands across the UK. They are also working together to help to promote ideas of how wetlands can be more of a focus of environmental policy – while they cover less than 5% of the world’s surface, they lock away around a third of its terrestrial carbon.
Glengoyne is adopting two beehives from Plan Bee, a business which helps companies find a manageable way to do their bit to reverse the decline in bee populations. Two hives may not sound like a lot, but each will hold 40,000 bees – a total of 80,000 – all of which do their bit to pollinate the surrounding plants and help to increase biodiversity.
Aside from the corks and capsules, most of the material which goes into making Glengoyne’s packaging comes from Scotland, much of it very close to the distillery site at Dumgoyne, near Glasgow. The glass bottles come from England and all their packaging is all 100% plastic, metal and magnet free. In addition, all the wooden storage boxes for Glengoyne’s oldest single malts are designed so that the labels can be removed and they can be used as customisable luxury storage boxes once the whisky has been consumed, vastly prolonging their utility.
Glengoyne pledge that their packaging is 100% recyclable, and that it can all be disposed of via standard recycling routes.