West Slope distiller wins export award

A Western Slope distiller is among the latest winners of awards recognizing Colorado companies for their success in exporting.

Montanya Distillers in Crested Butte won the New-to-Export Award.

Northern Feed and Bean Co. in Lucerne won the Experienced Exporter Award in an annual program conducted by the Colorado Department of Agriculture. The awards were scheduled for presentation as part of the Governor’s Forum on Colorado Agriculture Feb. 22 in Denver.

“We had many good candidates this year, and we are proud to recognize these two companies for their hard work around the world,” said John Addison, international marketing specialist for the department. “This awards program is a way to celebrate the export successes of Colorado’s agricultural community.”

Montanya Distillers was honored for marketing its rums in Europe, overcoming obstacles to export to a logistically challenging market.

Montanya Distillers makes three types of rum using sugar cane from Louisiana, but also water drawn from a well beneath its facility in Crested Butte and honey produced by bees near the distillery. The rums are aged in oak barrels that previously held Colorado whiskey.

Northern Feed and Bean was honored for its efforts over the years to increase dry bean exports, including exports to new markets in the Caribbean and Central America.

By one estimate, the agricultural industry contributes more than $40 billion annually to the Colorado economy. The value of agricultural products exported from the state totals nearly $2 billion a year.

For more information about Montanya Distillers, log on to www.montanyarum.com.