The new distillery in Marion County, Ky., will be state-of-the-art and carbon neutral, Pernod Ricard said. The investment will also include the build of a world class visitor center facility that will welcome whiskey aficionados on the historic South Trail of Kentucky Bourbon.
The new Jefferson's facility is also expected to be the first distillery of its size in the U.S. to achieve LEED certification, an internationally recognized sustainability framework for healthy, efficient, carbon and cost-saving environmentally friendly buildings. The distillery and warehouses will include such low carbon technologies as electrode boilers powered by certified renewable electricity, enabling the distillery to not use fossil fuels during bourbon production.
"American whiskey is an extremely vibrant spirits category, and our strategic investments over the last few years have proven successeful," said "Alexandre Ricard, Chairman/CEO. “Our philosophy of partnering with entrepreneurial brand founders, while preserving the heritage and terroir associated with the brands they created, has made us an established player in premium American Whiskey. Jefferson’s founder Trey Zoeller is no exception. This new investment will allow us to grow our share of category sales not only in the U.S., but also in export markets” Ricard said.
Ann Mukherjee, Chairman/CEO, Pernod Ricard North America, said “The new distillery will enable Jefferson’s to efficiently keep up with very strong consumer demand while staying true to the company’s longstanding commitment to sustainability."
Founded in 1997 by Trey Zoeller and his father Chet, Jefferson’s joined the Pernod Ricard portfolio in 2019 when the company acquired the brand’s parent, Castle Brands. Since the acquisition, Jefferson’s U.S. sales have doubled.
“For the last 25 years we have been sourcing, contract distilling and -- through Kentucky Artisan Distillery -- distilling ourselves,” said Trey Zoeller who continues to guide Jefferson’s in his role as Founder and Chief Strategist. “It is now time for us to take more control of our destiny. The carbon neutral, state-of-the-art distillery we are building would not be possible without Pernod Ricard’s forward thinking, integrity, and commitment to Jefferson’s and the Bourbon category’s future.”
Irish Distillers and Chivas Brothers, both units of Pernod Ricard, recently announced plans to invest €300 million in Ireland and €100 million in Scotland to equip these brands with more sustainable distillation technologies and greater production capacity to meet growing demands.