Carbon-negative rum distillery raises £150,000

Two Drifters, which claims to be the world’s first carbon-negative rum distillery, surpassed its fundraising target of £150,000 (US$197,200) in three hours.

Two Drifters, which is based in Devon, UK, launched its crowdfunding campaign on Monday 9 November on Crowdcube. To date, the campaign has raised £181,910 (US$239,150) from 240 investors.

Launched in 2019 by Gemma and Russ Wakeham, Two Drifters seeks to become the “world’s most established sustainable spirit”. Two Drifters produces British white rum, spiced rum and an overproof spiced pineapple rum, using fermented molasses.

Russ Wakeham, who is also an organic chemist, said: “We’re incredibly proud of how far we have come since launching Two Drifters in 2019 and delighted we’ve already hit our crowdfunding target.

“Our ethos is to produce award-winning rums with minimal impact on the planet. We believe there are very few British distilleries that actually make rum from raw ingredients, rather than importing it and flavouring it and we’re confident our rum can compete with the best Caribbean rums on the market.”

The site is entirely carbon negative from field to grass. The building, equipment and van are electric and have a zero-emission tariff, Two Drifters said.

Emissions from the site are offset with direct air capture through a partnership with Climeworks, which converts carbon dioxide into chalk.

Money raised from the campaign, which will remain open until next month, will help to secure new, larger retail opportunities and improve the distillery’s operations. The brand is currently available in John Lewis, Master of Malt and Virgin Wines.

Gemma Wakeham added: “We are now in a position to take Two Drifters further to more people. The money we raise from our crowdfunding campaign will be used to develop the brand even further, from an increase in high level, strategic marketing/PR activity to working with brand ambassadors to get our rums into bigger retail spaces.

“We also plan to improve processes at the distillery, so we can make sure we are able to produce, bottle and ship the increase in demand easily and efficiently. We plan on having a much larger voice in the craft spirit scene.”

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Author: Nicola Carruthers

Timothy Kelly

Tim is the Founder & Master Distiller at Felene. He developed his passion for the spirits and hospitality business while growing-up and working in his family's restaurant and liquor store business. Tim’s passion for the epicurean lifestyle has found it’s latest manifestation in the Felene Distillery. Tim is a 5-time Gold Medal Award winning Distiller. He has won a Platinum medal at the Prestigious Los Angeles Spirits Awards and his signature vodka was named Best-in-Category by the American Distilling Institute. Mr. Kelly is also a prolific author and writer and his blog is filled with ideas, discoveries, observations and recommendations to help his readers enjoy life’s simple epicurean pleasures.

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