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Pernod Ricard to invest $250m in carbon neutral bourbon distillery

The investment will also include a visitor center facility that will welcome whiskey aficionados on the historic South Trail of Kentucky Bourbon. 

Pernod Ricard says the carbon neutral facility will be the first distillery of its size in the US 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.

Jefferson’s will also continue to partner with local farmers and suppliers to source ingredients and casks.

An ‘extremely vibrant’ category

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 US sales have doubled. 

Pernod Ricard has been growing its presence in the American whiskey category over recent years: notably with the creation of a dedicated unit​ this year and a portfolio that includes other acquisitions such as West Virginia’s Smooth Ambler (acquired in 2017) and Texas’ TX and Kentucky’s Rabbit Hole (also acquired in 2019). 

“American whiskey is an extremely vibrant spirits category, and our strategic investments over the last few years have proven successful”​ said Alexandre Ricard, Chairman and CEO, Pernod Ricard.

“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.

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