Global is already Local.
Past, present and future.
When first thinking about this, there are dozens of things that come to mind. Vodka is rarely one of the things on the top 5 list of most exciting trends…by law it is supposed to be odorless, colorless, tasteless. Watching paint dry is literally more kinetic, but then something new comes along and everyone in the local press and social blogs, from WDIV to Eater Detroit, has something to say. Enter Our/Vodka and the local incarnation — Our/Detroit. But that’s not really the topic of this conversation.
Our/Vodka was launched in 2013 as the world’s first Global and Local brand. Åsa Caap and 5 other Swedish entrepreneurs had the idea to create micro-distilleries around the world that would have identical branding and vision, choosing local partners while using the brains of Pernod Ricard to set up the facilities, train the local staff and help with marketing. Our/Detroit, the first US city and only the second on the world tour, was launched earlier this month. The partners, distiller, and sales manager are all talented women and the distillery was designed to take over a building that has been vacant for years. Using local ingredients and engaging the community with artist projects, it is part of the revival of this great city. All good things, but it’s the Global/Local concept that made us realize how much the world has changed and how intertwined everything can be from one side of the globe to the other.
If the global financial crisis in 2008 wasn’t enough to make us realize that if a butterfly flaps its wings in Shanghai a tornado might form in Kansas, just think about how social media and the internet have transformed our lives. A tweet in Detroit is read by an MW in Spain, re-tweeted to thousands of followers and then read by a wine aficionado in…wait for it…Detroit. A tiny craft spirits producer in Oregon gets a phone call from an importer in London who wants to bring in Gin and Whisky from 8 time zones away (because they don’t have enough Gin or Whisky in England!). Someone in Moscow loves Cachaça, posts a photo on Facebook of their latest Caipirinha and a small distiller in Brazil is made proud. You get the picture. Global is Local and vice versa. Let’s all embrace the fact that this is a great generation to live in and a great time to raise a glass to a friend around the corner or halfway around the world.
Cheers to smarter drinking!