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Our Story

We are Michael, Charlotte, Mark, Faye, Amy and a community of around 250 people and 5000 deer based on the Isle of Jura, or to go by it’s Gaelic name,  ‘Diùra’.

More deer than people

Jura has always been home to more deer than people. Which is how it got its name:‘Diùra translates to Deer Island… which is where the story really starts.

Deer Island Distillers is our (Michael and Charlotte) only child and born out of a conversation we had back in 2019, where Michael quite simply said he loved rum and would like to try and make some one day, to which Charlotte replied ‘Ok let's do that’. We then roped in our besties: Mark to do all the design work and Faye to be a taste tester and we got started. Amy joined the team in May 2021 as our first (formal) employee!

The centre of what we do

Jura itself is at the centre of what we do. All of our decisions, including the initial decisions to start this venture, are driven by our desire to support our island community. Our mission is to create jobs, support the economy, support local projects and to leave something behind for future generations.

Though we are still a tiny producer and are just starting out, we aren’t going to wait to get started on implementing some stuff that will help us deliver on our mission.

Anyone who follows the company (or any of us on social media) will know island life can be quite different! We are very lucky to live in one of the most amazing places on the planet that offers residents new adventures on a daily basis. These adventures may be long walks on the paps or winter sea swims, or they may be building your own house, or looking after your land. Due to the lack of services on the island, Diurach’s have to do a lot themselves. There are three initiatives we have rolled out to try and support the community on this front:

Island Living Wage

Living on an island, especially one as small as Jura, means that life in general can cost more. We believe that the cost of living is higher and for that reason we have created our own Island Living Wage.

We will pay all of our team a minimum wage of £12 an hour.

Community Engagement

Amy’s role at DI is all about community engagement - she is literally our Community Engagement Coordinator. Amy’s role includes time that will be given to the community to support local projects and/or work with existing volunteer communities to assist them in their work. The glue that holds small communities like ours together are groups of people who work voluntarily to develop activities and services for residents and visitors alike. This is time people give up for free and we hope that giving Amy time to dedicate to the community will enable some weight to be taken from volunteers.

As we grow we will offer all of our team the chance to spend some of their working time assisting on community related projects.

Employee Work Life Balance

All of this means work life balance is really important on Jura, so we feel it is our responsibility to ensure our team achieves that.

We therefore operated on the basis that a full time role at DI is 32.5 hour week for all.

Our story is really just getting started so please keep visiting the website and follow us on Instagram and Facebook to keep up to date of what we are doing, both on the island and with product launches.

We hope to see you on the island soon.

Charlotte & Michael

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