Behind the bottle | Explaining the price

Behind the bottle | Explaining the price

Functional ingredients are at the heart of everything we do. Let us take you behind the curtain, to throw some light on what goes into our bottles; how we source our ingredients and work with suppliers, the processes we use to best extract function and flavor, and why we invest in R&D, all to provide the highest quality drinks we possibly can. Discover just what goes into every bottle of Three Spirit. 
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1. You get out what we put in

Our ingredients are expertly sourced from all over the world and we have some amazing partners who cultivate many beautiful plant-based ingredients. It is incredibly important for us to find producers who are both innovative and ambitious, as well as technically proficient and able to produce a consistent level of quality, something that is not always easy. There is often a divide between large mainstream ingredient suppliers with all the credentials and efficiencies, and the smaller artisan producers who are pushing the boundaries of what is possible. We like to work with both as they are good at different things. For a deeper dive into how our drinks are sourced and how Three Spirit drinks are made as a whole, check out our blog 'Making Three Spirit'.

2. Fair and ethical pay for everyone involved

We care about the people who work with us, all the way through the supply chain. Three Spirit carefully vet our suppliers to ensure that everyone within our supply chain gets paid fairly for their produce and for their work. We have and are continuing to develop strict policies against modern slavery and exploitation, and many of the farmers and foragers that cultivate and harvest the plants that we use are paid well above the going rate. We are still an independent company, and due to the nature of some of the ingredients that we purchase - economies of scale often don’t apply. We work with several independent growers, and we ensure that they get paid a fair rate for the highly specialised work that they do. We believe it is extremely important to ensure that everyone down the supply chain gets paid a fair wage and is granted the same rights, and we firmly believe that it is worth paying more for an ingredient if it ensures that people and the planet are taken care of.

3. Wait... why is the same price as alcohol when you don’t pay duty tax? And is it even distilled?

When it comes to our extraction process, what don't we do?! Yes, distillation is one technique that we use to extract flavor and functional compounds, but it isn’t by any means the only method that we use. We expertly source our ingredients, from niche suppliers all over the world and use multiple extraction methods - from the humble art of simply adding and mixing, to the complex sciences of fermentation (some of our ingredients are fermented for over 18 months) roasting, traditional distillation, low-temperature vacuum distillation, COextraction, reverse osmosis, maceration over a number of months, and ultrasonic extraction. In some cases, we do use ethanol to extract the flavor and functional compounds out of the plant matter - and this is duty paid despite our final product not being alcoholic. This method is often best for pulling delicate flavors and non-water soluble material from the plant. Many of the spirits that you’ll know and love are made in huge volumes by international corporations using commodity ingredients which have minimal care for the environment or the
growers. The spirits duty on a bottle of 40% ABV spirit is £11.50 per litre, and the cost of ingredients is a tiny fraction in comparison. We may not pay duty explicitly, however, the cost of our ingredients and production are much higher. We believe that the quality of the ingredients and processes provide a great deal of value.

4. Investing in research & development

We work with some of the most respected people in their fields, globally. In order to make our liquids we have worked with some amazing people who all bring something different to the party, and you can read more about our alchemists here. We work with leading professors and invest in research into the functions of the ingredients we use. We have published our first peer reviewed paper on myrcene with Dr. Michael Heinrich of UCL and Dr. Shelini Surendran from Surrey University, and are currently investing into research into the cognitive effects of Lion's Mane mushroom. We also work with a collection of leading bartenders like Tristen Stevenson, Robin Honhold, Matt Hastings and Thom Aske, who have helped shape the flavor profiles of our drinks to create stand-alone liquids that can deliver complex and challenging flavours and be used to make endless cocktails or sipped neat. 

5. Sustainable packaging and green energy

Since we began trading in early 2019 we have worked hard to have as close to a zero plastic policy with our products and packaging as possible. We use recycled materials where possible and make sure that the bulk of our packaging is fully recyclable. All of our delivery packaging is made from sustainably sourced paper, the bulk of which has been recycled is biodegradable and compostable. Many of the ingredients that go into making Three Spirit are organically certified. We work with both global suppliers who conform to the highest welfare and sustainable practices and also small artisan suppliers who are pioneers in their fields. We have full traceability of our supply chain and are in the process of applying to become a B Corp to ensure we keep to the highest standard possible. We are proud to be a vegan product and do not endorse any animal testing in our supply chain. 

Ultimately, a lot more goes into every bottle than just our ingredients.

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