Alicia Burton elevates Scoular's market presence in the distilling industry

April 28, 2022

Alicia Burton remembers the urgency in the customer’s voice. 

The Kentucky distiller needed a load of rye before the end of the next day or would have to temporarily shut down production.

Scoular responded quickly, developing and executing a supply solution, and the customer received the rye in time.

“With our logistics and supply chain expertise, Scoular is a distilling partner our customers can count on,” says Burton, Scoular’s Kentucky-based market development specialist for distilling.

Scoular is a reliable partner for distilleries

Our internal network and supply chain partners, including our strong farmer connections, help make Scoular a reliable partner for distilleries. Those connections, combined with our logistics and supply chain capabilities, make Scoular a trusted source for distilling grain ingredients. We have a proven track record of meeting the industry’s high level of quality and service requirements.

We also continue to make strategic investments in North America to support both our farmer customers and our distillery customers. One example is our new color sorter and cleaner in Kentucky, focused on meeting the quality needs of our distillery customers and expanding the geography we can source bushels directly from farmers.

Bringing a diversified distilling background

Alicia is playing an important role in our local connections to distillers and growers.

She joined Scoular in November 2021 and lives in Louisville, Kentucky, providing our company a local presence in the heart of distilling country. As a Louisville native and the third generation of her family working in the industry, she’s not new to Kentucky or distilling.

She entered the industry from the ground up, starting as a part-time distillery tour guide. She later worked in social media marketing, helping new distilling brands spread the word about their products. She also launched her own podcast focused on the spirits industry and distilleries.

She gained valuable experience after joining a Kentucky distiller that grows an heirloom variety of corn, providing her the opportunity to follow the process from the moment the corn was planted until it was barreled to make bourbon.

As production supervisor, she oversaw the sourcing of grains and supplies, along with planning the production schedule. She also worked on product development, and flavor profiling barrels and bourbon blends.

Because of her technical knowledge, Alicia can talk with our customers in detail about the distilling process and find the best ways to help them.

For example, she can identify how grain quality can affect flavor profiles and ethanol yields.

Alicia grew up surrounded by relatives in the distilling business. An aunt worked in the gift shop of a distiller and Alicia remembers visiting as a young girl, and getting a behind-the-scenes look at the production line. She remembers the aroma of the aging barrels and bourbon, and how it smelled like delicious bread baking.

Her grandfather worked on the production line of a distiller in Frankfort, Kentucky, and she remembers him always having new bottles of bourbon from work.

“He had so much pride in sharing with the family what he had helped make,” Alicia says.

She has loved seeing the advancements in the industry since her grandfather’s days, such as the growing importance of sustainability.

Supporting the distilling industry through sustainability, advocacy and giving efforts

Scoular’s efforts include working with a major customer on rolling out a Farm Sustainability Assessment (FSA), which is a sustainability certification program, and exploring different options with our other major distilling customers. We are also making a larger push into cover crops and regenerative agriculture to help our customers hit their sustainability goals.

Our sustainability effort includes giving back to our communities. The Scoular foundation showed support to Kentucky communities impacted by last year’s tornados by donating more than $20,000 to the American Red Cross and to bourbon industry fundraising efforts.

We also give back to the distilling industry.

Alicia participates on the board of Bourbon Women, an organization that encourages the development of women personally and professionally. She serves on the organization’s diversity and inclusion committee. Also, Scoular is an associate member of the Tennessee Distillers Guild, whose members promote and advocate for the distilling industry.

“I’m passionate about the distilling industry and so proud of all the people who help make it succeed,” Alicia says. “The distilling industry makes a huge positive impact on my home state of Kentucky, and I am grateful to be part of it.”


Learn more about our solutions for distilleries.

Picture of Jeff Vipond

Jeff Vipond

VP General Manager, Pulses & Seeds