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What do you get when you bring together a sustainable clothing company, an environmentally-conscious distillery, and a lively cleanup crew?

A spruced-up waterway and a really good time.

This spring, UBB is bringing a fun little surprise to our waterway cleanup tour. We’re teaming up with Maker’s Mark, the Kentucky distillery known for premium craft bourbon in red wax-dipped bottles, to boost cleanup efforts around the country. The details:

-Maker’s Mark has pledged to remove 75,000 pounds of trash from the world’s oceans and waterways. We’re going to help them get it done.

-Help us spread the word by mixing your favorite Maker’s Mark ® drink and posting a photo on social media with the hashtag #cocktailsforcleanups.

-Our four collaboration cleanups (look for the Maker’s ® logo on our 2019 cleanup tour map ) will be followed by a happy hour!

We get excited about all of our collaborations, but this one felt like a match made in heaven. While our products are quite different (one makes the bourbon in your cocktail, the other makes the reusable drinkware from which you might sip it) it turns out that Maker’s Mark and UBB actually have a lot in common.

Just like UBB is intentional about every part of our business, from the way crops are grown to the paper we use in catalogs, Maker’s Mark has sustainability in mind during every step of the bourbon-making process.

First, there’s the water—the heart of Maker’s Mark® bourbon. Visit the 623-acre campus where the distillery is located and you’ll find the lake that has served as the water source for every batch of bourbon ever produced there. It’s naturally filtered by limestone, which leaves the water in ideal bourbon-making condition. Recently, Maker’s Mark took water preservation to a new level by purchasing all the property surrounding its two lakes, so that they could adequately protect the entire watershed. They manage the land—the water, the grasslands, the hillsides—to be as welcoming as possible to all species (like bees and butterflies) and to serve as a demonstration area for landowners utilizing sustainable practices.

The bourbon starts with red winter wheat, which has been grown on the same family farm in central Kentucky for over 60 years. Maker’s Mark supports ongoing research on the farm to determine the most suitable grains for local soil and climate. The bourbon is aged in white oak barrels, and the distillery is helping identify more resilient strains of white oak trees to assure future generations of this renewable resource.

Taking these steps to uphold sustainable processes and protect their water sources inspired the Maker’s Mark team to do more. They started thinking about partnerships that would go beyond the boundaries of the distillery and make an impact on a broader level. That’s where we come in.

Cleaner waterways has been our mission since UBB was just a business plan. We’ve been organizing cleanups since we sold our first t-shirt, and have since removed over 1.5 million pounds of trash and recycling from the world’s waterways. We’re always raising our standards and learning from fellow businesses that place sustainability at the heart of their values, and that’s what makes Maker’s Mark such a perfect partner (they’re not just skimming the surface--check out their cleanups page). And what better way to end an impactful day of picking up trash than with a well-crafted cocktail concocted with a sustainability-focused bourbon?

We can’t think of anything, but you can see for yourself. Check out our 2019 Cleanup Tour Dates and look for the Maker’s Mark logo.


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