A Scottish distillery is set to be the first to offer their gin in a sustainable pouch that can be returned by free post for recycling when empty. 

Rock Rose Gin is offering fully recyclable pouches that can be returned their Dunnet Bay Distillery in Caithness, freepost via standard Royal Mail.

Once back at the distillery, the pouches will be collected by Terracycle where they will be recycled into new items.

The green innovation, the first of its kind in the UK, has been developed by Dunnet Bay Distillers in partnership with global innovation and transformation consultancy PA Consulting.

Rock Rose gin pouch

Following over 12 months of research and development, PA created a lightweight refill solution for current bottles with closed loop returns system for the pouches to be recycled by Terracycle.

A four layer laminate pouch has been designed to lock in all the freshness of the gin, with an easy-to-use plastic spout closure.

Delivered, as well as returned, through a letterbox, the sustainable packaging, which weighs 65 grams rather than 700 grams for a bottle, significantly reduces the energy spent in shipping Rock Rose Gin to customers.

Rock Rose Gin is renowned for its signature and collectible ceramic bottles, which are all hand signed and sealed at the distillery. With these new pouches, customers can easily refill the bottles at home, saving £4 per 700ml of gin, and meaning customers can use their Rock Rose Gin bottle for life. To recycle, the freepost stamped pouches go directly into the postbox.

Martin Murray, co-founder of Dunnet Bay Distillers, said: “We take sustainability incredibly seriously and have been working hard on our first to market recyclable pouches for over a year now. We are absolutely thrilled to be the first brand to have secured the support of Royal Mail for a postal recycling scheme, which we believe will be embraced by our customers.

“In the near future we plan to extend the scheme to bars, restaurants and shops, as well as making it available across all the spirits in our portfolio. What’s more, we are also offering in-store refills to customers at our distillery shop.”

Ryan McGinley, product design expert at PA Consulting added: “We are delighted to have helped Dunnet Bay Distillers create an environmentally friendly solution that delivers real value to its distillery and customers.

“It took ingenuity to develop a flexible pack that could be sent direct to consumers, which not only eradicates the need to use a single use bottle but also reduces their costs. This is a great example of PA bringing ingenuity to life.’’

Priced at £30 for a 700ml pouch, the new product will soon be available via www.dunnetbaydistillers.co.uk.

The launch is the latest in a raft of green initiatives from the UK’s most northerly mainland distillery, with the distillery part-powered via solar panels and ambitions to be a net producer of electricity by the end of 2020.

About The Author

Sean Murphy

Driven by a passion for all things drinks-related, Sean writes for The Scotsman extensively on the subject. He can also sometimes be found behind the bar at the world famous Potstill bar in Glasgow where he continues to enhance his whisky knowledge built up over 10 years advising customers from all over the world on the wonders of our national drink. Recently, his first book was published. Dubbed Gin Galore, it explores Scotland's best gins and the stories behind those that make them.

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