CLERMONT, Ky., March 22, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Two Kentucky icons are embarking on an alliance to preserve and protect the pristine limestone water in the Clermont area.
Jim Beam, the world's No. 1 selling bourbon whiskey, and Bernheim Arboretum & Research Forest, a 15,625 acre privately held forest just south of Louisville, have joined forces to develop a natural water sanctuary on Bernheim grounds immediately adjacent to the Jim Beam distillery.
Beginning as a one-year agreement, the Natural Water Sanctuary Alliance will protect water quality, restore wildlife habitats, and reintroduce native plants and trees. This group is also working toward a long-term agreement to enhance environmental education, improve watershed protection planning, and secure quality water.
"Great bourbon starts with great water," said Freddie Noe, eighth generation Beam Distiller. "In fact, the water in Clermont is one of the main reasons my family chose to settle here back in 1795. Jim Beam bourbon gets its distinct and wonderful taste, in part, from the local water, which is filtered naturally through limestone. We're proud to team up with our neighbors at Bernheim to preserve this vital natural resource."
The Jim Beam Natural Water Sanctuary Alliance at Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest will concentrate on conservation activities across Bernheim, particularly within the Long-Lick and Wilson Creek watersheds. These areas feature large forest expanses, wetlands and the head waters of three creeks and several small lakes that support wildlife, the surrounding communities, and the production of Jim Beam Bourbon.
Through this alliance, Jim Beam will also support Bernheim's work to protect the federally endangered Indiana Bat, and co-host an annual landowners' workshop to educate the community and promote best practices in water conservation and forest stewardship.
"The importance of clean water cannot be overstated. It's essential for wildlife. It's essential for human life and it's essential to our economy," said Mark Wourms, Bernheim's Executive Director. "We are grateful to have a corporate partner like Jim Beam that values protecting this vital natural resource."
The Natural Water Sanctuary Alliance is the latest example of Beam Suntory's dedication to protecting water and the environment, inspired by corporate parent Suntory Holdings, which has established 20 Natural Water Sanctuaries throughout Japan. These more than 20,000 acres of forest protect quality water to supply its facilities, and nurture surrounding communities for many years to come.
"Both the Beam and Bernheim families have deep Kentucky roots and centuries of heritage in the Clermont area," added Noe. "We have long shared a common respect and love for the land here and we understand the critical role protecting our environment, especially our natural water, plays in our future – not only the future of our business but the future health and well-being of our families, friends and colleagues who call this area home. We feel privileged to be able to give back to the community that has given us so much."
About Beam Suntory As the world's third largest premium spirits company, Beam Suntory is Crafting the Spirits Brands that Stir the World. Consumers from all corners of the globe call for the company's brands, including the iconic Jim Beam and Maker's Mark bourbon brands and Suntory whisky Kakubin, as well as world renowned premium brands including Knob Creek bourbon, Yamazaki, Hakushu and Hibiki Japanese whiskies, Teacher's, Laphroaig, and Bowmore Scotch whiskies, Canadian Club whisky, Courvoisier cognac, Hornitos and Sauza tequila, EFFEN and Pinnacle vodka, Sipsmith gin, and Midori liqueur.
Beam Suntory was created in 2014 by combining the world leader in bourbon and the pioneer in Japanese whisky to form a new company with a deep heritage, passion for quality, innovative spirit and commitment to Growing for Good. Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Beam Suntory is a subsidiary of Suntory Holdings Limited of Japan. For more information on Beam Suntory, its brands, and its commitment to social responsibility, please visit www.beamsuntory.com and www.drinksmart.com.
About Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest Bernheim's mission is to connect people with nature. Bernheim is the largest privately held contiguous forest block in the Eastern United States dedicated to conservation and education. Bourbon maker Isaac Wolfe Bernheim established the arboretum and forest in 1929 as a gift to the people of Kentucky. Fun, educational programs, diverse tree collections, 40 miles of hiking trails and varied landscapes are available every day except December 25 and January 1. Admission is free weekdays and to members. Weekends and holidays have a $5 environmental impact fee per vehicle. Schools and tour groups are welcome; please call in advance for scheduling and fees. Bernheim is located in Clermont, Ky., about 20 minutes south of the Louisville airport. From I-65 take exit 112 and follow the signs. Bernheim is a non-profit organization that relies on memberships, grants and donations for support. Come visit and enjoy the beauty of nature.