Specialist Support Helps Craft Distillers Flourish

Thursday, 12 January 2017

As with many business and lifestyle trends, the current surge in UK based craft distillers has its roots in the United States, where a desire to give consumers more choice resulted in a swathe of new craft brewers and spirits companies entering the market.

This trend was picked up in the UK and over the past few years we have seen growth in the number of small ‘craft’ distillers starting up.

Stirling based chemical and process engineering design consultancy, Allen Associates, has not only followed this trend closely, but has now become a key player the craft distilling industry.  

Utilising years of experience and skills honed working on high profile projects in over 100 distilleries across the UK and overseas, the Allen Associates team found itself ideally placed to help the new craft distillers take their projects from conceptual design/plans through detailed process design to commissioning.

“The craft distilling sector has seen significant growth over the past few years,” said Allen Associates managing director, Scott Allen.  “This is great news for the distilling engineering service sector as each project requires engineering support from a network of associated businesses – the majority of which are based in Scotland.

“The number of enquiries we have received from craft distillers has dramatically increased over the past few years and this trend looks set to continue through 2017.”

The geographic spread of the new distilleries is wide, stretching the length and breadth of the UK, although it should be noted that Scotland has seen more than its fair share of new operations due to the premium product status associated with Scotch and, more specifically, single malts. 

In June 2016, award-winning Scotch whisky brand, R&B Distillers, commenced their ambitious project to build the first legal distillery on the Isle of Raasay. With support from Allen Associates, the project is now well underway with the plan to open the distillery, and begin production, in summer 2017.

Scott continued: “R&B fully understands the importance of engaging with an experienced chemical and process engineer with expertise in distilling, at the earliest opportunity.   Allen Associates has been an integral part of the Raasay team from the onset of the project, helping to create the process design and ensuring the project is thoroughly risk assessed at every stage.

“The project has been planned in the finest detail and as a result R&B is on track to open its impressive new distillery in 2017, offering customers at home and overseas a unique premium quality product.”