Sustainability: The Proof is in the Process

From seed to shelf, we’re 100% Midwestern about what we do. That means we do things the right way, or we don’t do them all. No consolation prizes here, just award winning spirits.

Our organic farmers spend up to 3x more time than conventional farmers in the field because they don’t rely on chemical short-cuts. The benefit? Our farmers’ organic corn crops are free from harmful pesticides and herbicides.
Our distillation process and equipment are thoughtful proof of how we don’t choose between quality and sustainability. We go for both.
Our Guardians of Prairie taste-test each small batch, distilling our spirits until they meet our award winning standards vs. simply distilling a set number of times.

Take a closer look at the sustainable journey every ounce of Prairie Organic vodka and gin takes before it finds its way into your cocktail.

USDA Organic

Grounded in Good Beginnings

Here’s an important kernel of truth: Each ounce of Prairie Organic Spirits begins with 100% USDA certified organic corn, raised on Midwestern family farms. We know each farmer on a first-name basis (Hey, John!) and see their commitment to organic farming firsthand.

From sunup to sundown, season to season, here are a few of the steps our farmers happily take to uphold the integrity of their farmland, and our collective future:

Prep Their Fields

Before our farmers plant a single seed, they put a prep in their step. They spend three seasons carefully preparing their fields to verify their organic certification.

Plant Practice Crops

Next, they plant a 25-foot buffer crop to make sure chemicals from nearby farms don’t contaminate their own organic corn. So. Smart!

Weed With Flames

Instead of harmful herbicides, our farmers follow Mother Nature’s lead, using things like controlled prairie fires to burn weeds away.

Befriend Birds & Bats

Our farmers rely on native birds and bats to consume the crop-eating insects instead of pesticides, keeping the ecosystem in check and thrivin’.

Meet Our Farmers

John Sather

As a fourth-generation organic farmer, John is excited to see the growing momentum behind the organic movement. His grandfather shared key organic farming practices with him, which is why he takes steps like rotating in crops of soybeans and other plants to ensure that when it’s time to raise corn, the quality is unmatched.

The Olsons

Jonathan and Carolyn Olson are third-generation owners of their family farm near Cottonwood in the southwestern corner of Minnesota. Most days you’ll find Jonathan walking their 1,100-acre farm with his trusty sidekick, Pongo, a Rat terrier. Come harvest, Carolyn enjoys her time behind the wheel of their towering combine.

Going All In on
Zero-Waste Distilling

Powered by 100% renewable energy, our small-batch distilling process wastes nothing, as in NOTHING, along the way. How’s that? Okay, say we have extra dried distillers grains, we don’t throw them away. We share it with animals on neighboring farms. Or, when our very fancy custom hybrid still produces more spirits than we can use, it goes on to become corn oil for biofuels. Here are some of the thoughtful steps we take along the way to bring you award winning spirits:

1

Mashing

We add 100% USDA certified organic corn and water to the still. Then we crank up the heat.
2

Liquification

Enzymes (tiny living organisms) make their grand entrance at this stage. They essentially get a little rowdy and break down the organic corn into a liquid form.
3

Fermentation

Patience pays off here. We wait 60 hours for sugar in the corn to transform into alcohol.

Guarding our Great Taste

The secret to our superior spirits? Our Guardians of Prairie. Instead of distilling our vodka or gin a set number of times, this highly trained collective of supertasters have the #dreamjob of sampling each small batch to make sure it’s worthy of being bottled. Here’s how that works:

Watch for the Heart

There are three basic parts to each small batch in a still: the head, the heart and the tail. The purest spirits lie in the heart — mildly poetic, right?

Call in the guardians of Prairie

Once the heart of the small batch is found, Guardians of Prairie put their palette to work, evaluating its taste and aroma against a gold-standard sample of the spirit. If they give it the thumbs-up, it goes on to be bottled.

When needed, distill again

If a Guardian of Prairie finds a sample isn’t up to snuff, the spirit goes back into the still until it’s distilled to perfection.

Taste for Yourself
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