Hello, dear Meadiacs! It's our birthday! Ten years ago, in October of 2013, Groennfell Meadery had its soft opening in Colchester, VT, and it has been quite a ride ever since.
In honor of the occasion, we're making three big announcements.
When I think back to that big, empty warehouse and the stars in our eyes, I feel both jealousy and pity for those two young people.
We spent a long time deciding the best way to celebrate our decade in business. Honestly, Kelly and I have been talking about it for almost year.
Yes, we're going to have some nostalgic mead releases. Yes, there are going to be some surprise sales. Yes, we're going to have a party. But all of those things are so... quotidian.
We love making mead, and we're proud of the impact we've had on the wider meadmaking community. In fact, to this day, if you Google, "define craft mead," a definition from one of our articles comes up.
We're proud to be an Open Source Meadery, and we've tried to carry those values into everything we do, including our popular episodes Things I Wish I'd Known before Going Pro and Things I'm Glad I didn't Know before Going Pro. We are so proud of the many meaderies who took advantage of our Open Source policy and reached out to us in their earliest days; you guys are killing it. Thank you for doing what you do.
All of this leads me to the first big announcement: We've decided to go a step further with being Open Source. Over the next few months, we'll be releasing a series of articles going into each of the terrifying moments where the meadery almost went under. We'll talk about the things we tried that worked, the things that didn't work, and the things we're still unsure about.
It took us a long time to decide if we were ready to share such personal information. There have been three separate days when Kelly and I woke up and weren't sure if we were going to lose our house that day. If we can spare any small business owner that experience by sharing what we've learned, we decided that it's our moral obligation to do so.
Our second big announcement is more of a realization. Feasting is the heart and soul of our business, but in the past few years (especially with the closing of the Mead Hall and then through COVID), we haven't been putting it front and center. Our first step was the reopening of our Mobile Mead Hall, but there's so much more we can do.
As part of our mission of feasting, we're going to be hosting more Mead Hall events around the state and also offering a whole new way to feast with Groennfell. (This is one of the birthday surprises you're going to have to wait for!)
Our final announcement is by far the biggest. As a proud B Corp, we are a Triple Bottom Line company. This means that each of our decisions should focus on People, Planet, and Fair Pay for All. This is a noble goal, and we're proud of what we've accomplished, but we realize that there's so much more that we can do.
Climate Change is here. It's not on its way. Climate Change is here and it's going to get worse.
While mead is a more environmentally sustainable alcoholic beverage (please forgive the Washington Post's complete absence of citations, you can read researched and well-cited articles here), we can't lie to ourselves and say that even our Net-Zero Production is making a dent. So, we have decided:
Going forward we are devoting at least half of Groennfell Meadery's time and energy to Regenerative Agriculture Research.
By now, many of you are familiar with our partner farm Bondegaard. Over the next few years, it is going to be a bigger and bigger part of our mission. We will be hosting feasts on the land to share the project that is, in many ways, the core of what we're seeking to create: a safe, sustainable, fair, equitable, and welcoming place to feast now and for centuries to come.
Thank you, Meadiacs, for being part of our community for so many years. Now, let us toast to the decades to come!