This craft rum with a conscience from Belize is an organic, single estate rum, sustainably produced at a new distillery in the heart of the Belizean rainforest.
Todd Robinson, a marine conservationist, and Anya Fernald of Belcampo, started their Copalli Rum adventure in a rural community in southern Belize. Robinson purchased the property in Punta Gorda along with 20,000 acres of surrounding rainforest in 2005. Since then, it has been a model of progressive conservation practices, supporting both the environment and the community. On site, they have a luxury eco-lodge, an organic farm and more recently they completed the distillery.
“For me, I’ve always loved the idea and the possibility to work in developing countries. So the chance to do what we were doing in Belize and do it with high-quality ingredients and high-quality farming … is really powerful for me.” Anya Fernald
The rum itself is crafted from just three ingredients: non-GMO heirloom sugar cane, yeast, and filtered canopy water sourced directly from the distillery’s farm.
Reflecting the terroir of the tropical Belizean farm where it is produced, Copalli Rum has two grades of product that can be sipped on their own or as a base for classic and modern rum cocktails:
White Rum (84 Proof/42% ABV)
A double distillation of fresh sugarcane juice, crushed within two hours of being cut. The white rum is made with a blend of pot and column distillation with a long resting of the finished product on stainless steel. The smooth end product displays vanilla, coffee bean, and grass on the nose with fresh berries, citrus zest, and cactus notes to finish.
Barrel Rested Rum (88 Proof/44% ABV)
The Barrel Rested Rum is made using double distillation of sugarcane juice, use of exclusively full-bodied copper pot still distillation with French technique. It is aged in American Oak ex-bourbon barrels to create a rich sweet rum displaying cola and leather on the nose with tasting notes including cinnamon, nutmeg, and tobacco.
The Copal Tree Lodge, a luxury eco-resort in Punta Gorda, is a company doing its best to benefit its local community.
This partnership between the founders of Copalli Rum, Copal Tree Distillery and the Copal Tree Lodge has actively been promoting both preservation of its 22,000-acre rainforest land as well as marine conservation programs over the past 20 years. Additionally, the group provides education grants for local girls and boys to continue their education into high school.
Copalli Rum has taken their philosophy of conservation and sustainability in the bottle a step further. The Copal Tree Distillery has been donated in trust for the benefit of the people in the Toledo District, whilst collectively the Distillery, its neighbouring eco-venue, Copal Tree Lodge and The Copal Tree Farm are operating as the largest employer in Southern Belize, providing over 100 jobs to local residents in a clean and safe working environment.
The Copal Tree Distillery is powered by sustainable, regenerative biomass and the process supports full-circle conversion of waste from production into agricultural inputs. The sugarcane used to produce the rum is grown on Copal Tree Farms, so all levels of products can be overseen from start to finish.
“We spent a huge amount of time figuring out how to make it truly zero impact. That involved building a system in our plant with water filtration using natural biodegradation and probiotics to take all the waste, digest it, and turn it into stuff that wasn’t going to hurt the environment.” Anya Fernald
For Reference: Copalli Rum Introduction Video