Using Local Produce
Why is using local produce and eating within the season better for you and the planet?
Discover why local produce, not only benefits you but the planet too!
Unsurprisingly, Tayport Distillery has been inspired by the local produce that surrounds the distillery since our inception. Our Eau de Viex were born out of an idea to create spirits using ONLY the local fruit and grain. The spirits created were a high proof distilled example of the fruit essence without the sweetness. On the nose, all our Eau de Viex have a delicious smell of the fruit it is distilled from, however when you taste they can be sharp, crisp and jammy in flavour depending if it is a berry fruit or apple.
Traditionally, Eau de Viex is produced in European countries without much refinement or precision, with stories of spirits being drunk from the cart as it has just been distilled! At Tayport Distillery, we wanted to refine the product a bit more by using a malt barley base to make the texture smoother, and distilling the different flavours as they came into season. Why? Fruit is tastier when it is in season. It is richer, sweeter and filled with many more nutritional benefits.(1) Distilling produce out of season which has been unnaturally ripened, will not give you the maximum flavour benefits, and for a product like Eau de Viex it is important to capture all the natural sweetness of the fruits to help balance the high proof nature of the spirit.
Both of our 1992 Liqueurs have garnered prestigious results in spirits competitions due to the fruit we collect locally to create them. We truly believe that it is the unique climate that we have in Fife and Angus that produces the deliciously vibrant and outstanding flavours within the berries. No artificial flavourings or essences are needed in our products, we can let the fruit do the talking as its flavour stands out enough!
It is not only in fruit that we see this change in flavour depending on seasonality. Botanicals used in our gins have also been affected by the seasons with some being a lot more intense in flavour. We noticed this in particular with the Scots Pine, when the spruces grow. These spruces can be incredibly dense and rich in flavour and can alter the flavour of our gin if not used with caution.
Not only is the food quality and flavour better when eaten in season and local, it really helps to reduce our carbon footprint. Buying local produce reduces your travel time to collect the food and the travel time of the food itself.
Produce does not have to be stored, packaged, chilled, heated up or frozen before reaching the supermarket shelf which dramatically increases its carbon footprint.(2) ‘Greenhouse gases are produced in many stages of the growing, processing, distribution and retail aspects of food production- accounting for around 20-30% of total greenhouse gas emissions in the UK (3)’. At Tayport Distillery, we have made a conscious effort to source not only our produce locally but 94% of our suppliers are also British or locally based.
Lastly, economically we would be saving a lot of money if we collectively started to buy our produce from the local farm shop or grocery. How? I can hear you all asking! This would obviously depend on weather conditions and the success of a harvest, however with an abundance for fruit and vegetables in season it would bring the price of the produce down (4). If there was a higher demand for produce sourced locally and in season, there would be no need to freeze, chill, store and transport products globally. All of these processes are an added cost to the end product. You would be getting a tastier product for a cheaper price and also supporting a local business! Sounds pretty good to me!
Garnett, T (2008) Cooking Up a Storm: Food, Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Our Changing Climate. Surrey: University of Surrey, Food Climate Research Network, Centre for Environmental Strategy