Craft distilling and coffee filters are some of the oldest traditions in the Maine craft distilleries industry, and they have endured for centuries.
Maine Craft Distilling has a long history of producing and serving craft spirits, including craft cocktails and spirits infused with local herbs.
But recently, the distillery has faced criticism from local authorities for selling filters at high prices, especially to craft distillers, which could cause health concerns.
According to a news release issued in May by the Maine Distillers Association, craft distillation is not a “culturally specific art form.”
The distillery’s owners, James and Linda Taylor, have been in the business for more than 70 years and claim to have been a part of many different craft distillery traditions, but they say the filter craft is their own.
The Taylor brothers began selling filter craft supplies in 2006, and the company has since expanded to sell other types of filter crafts such as coffee filters, beer filters, and vodka filters.
The Taylor brothers say that the filters are made with local materials, and that they are intended for personal consumption and not for commercial use.
They also say that they have never sold filter craft in Maine.
The Taylor’s told The American Journal-Register that they started selling filter crafts in 2006 because the company had started selling “filters for kids and pets” and wanted to help make sure that Maine craft drinkers were protected.
The products have since been popular among craft distellers in Maine, as well as with those seeking a crafty alternative to the standard cocktail.
When the Taylor’s started selling the filters in 2018, they found that some craft distills, including New England Spirits Distillery, were starting to take their craft distilates and selling them for profit.
New England Distillings president and CEO Scott Houser said that the company’s products were “not for profit” and that “they do not sell for profit in Maine.”
New England Spirits distillate founder and president Mike Wyshak also told the Associated Press that the filter maker’s products are made from the local ingredients, and he said they would continue to sell their product in Maine if the distiller’s were to lose its filter contract.
“We want to make sure [local distillates] can continue to have a good business,” Wysak said.
“If that contract is lost, that would be a blow to all of us, but we have a long way to go to be able to maintain that business.”
Houser also told ABC News that the Taylor brothers had not heard from any other craft distlates about the filter purchase, but said he thought it was a good sign.
“We have a great relationship with New England and we believe in that industry,” Housers said.
A spokesperson for the Taylor Family said in a statement that they were “grateful” that the distillations filter products were available in Maine at the time, and would continue selling them as long as they continue to operate in the state.
“As a matter of policy, we do not advertise and we do make a profit from the sale of these products,” the statement said.