National Apprenticeship Week: Meet the Skilled Coopers at Loch Lomond Whiskies.
At Loch Lomond Whiskies, our commitment to craftsmanship and tradition is exemplified by the skilled hands that help shape our spirit – our coopers.
We take immense pride in being one of only four distilleries in Scotland with an on-site cooperage, where the ancient craft of coopering is not just preserved but passionately passed down through generations.
Loch Lomond Whiskies employs one apprentice a year, offering a four-year training programme, learning from the best in the business.
We caught up with some of the team earlier this month to hear more about their journey.
Gerard is from Alexandria and has embraced the art of coopering through our apprenticeship programme and has been with us since 2017.
“You have to have a keen eye for quality and know what to look for when getting it ready to go into the warehouse. "Loch Lomond Group has been instrumental in my development, providing me with all the right traditional tools and having access to a team with so much experience is how I learnt what I have. For anyone thinking about getting into coopering, I’d say go for it, it’s a great experience.”
Dalton is one of our apprentice coopers, at only 22, he’s the youngest of the team and started work with us in 2022.
“I thought a cooper apprentice seemed like a fun and interesting career path, and something different to usual jobs so I decided to go for it. I had no idea about coopering before starting the apprenticeship. I’ve already learned a lot about the ancient craft, from working with the traditional tools to getting to know what a quality cask should look like.”
In recent years, the whisky industry has been actively training new apprentices and there are now over 300 skilled coopers across the country. At Loch Lomond Whiskies, we endeavour to maintain this craft. At Loch Lomond, we are dedicated to training and nurturing talents like Dalton & Gerard to ensure the art of coopering remains alive for future generations to come.
Find out more about our Cooperage