Nature Canada

Drinks for Species on the Brink of Extinction

There is currently tremendous interest among consumers to make ethical purchases, to know where products come from and to buy products that support their values. Not only can this help businesses grow, but it can also be an innovative way to engage people to learn about an organization or cause, leading to a symbiotic relationship between businesses and nature organizations.

A great example is with Nature Saskatchewan, which recently partnered with Keith Jorgenson of Prairie Sentinel Bottleworks, a small alcohol producer in Rosthern, Saskatchewan which uses local prairie apples in all of its products. The partnership has benefitted both parties and has helped bring awareness to the extinction crisis in the prairies.

Raising awareness of endangered prairie species one cider at a time

Since partnering with Nature Saskatchewan to feature endangered prairie species on its bottles, demand for the cider has increased and has doubled the business’s profits. Nature Saskatchewan has also begun to see revenue from the partnership, as proceeds are donated, but as Becky Quist explained to us, this opportunity has been most valuable to Nature Saskatchewan’s outreach strategy. This is especially true with young people, as the branding on the bottles has helped get their name out there and given a new and inventive way of reaching potential supporters.

Although Prairie Sentinel Bottleworks is a for-profit business, it is a social business at its core. The project allows them to give back to the community and increase awareness of the extinction crisis in the grasslands of Saskatchewan, an ecosystem that is the most at risk globally. As Keith explains, a lot of endangered animals in the prairies are not well-known, and they don’t have the notoriety of other endangered species, such as beluga whales. Highlighting the species in creative ways is key to increasing awareness of their struggles.

They have had a lot of success in educating people at farmers markets while selling their products. They are able to speak about what animals are endangered, why they are at risk and how to help stop the extinction crisis – all of which helps Nature Saskatchewan’s mission of protecting this valuable and fragile ecosystem. To learn more about the Grasslands, check out Nature Canada’s Prairie Grasslands Campaign!

Nature Saskatchewan is a part of our NatureNetwork Program which helps groups improve their public engagement. To learn more about this program, click here.

Photos taken by Becky Quist.

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