UK Happenings

UK to Host Inaugural James B. Beam Institute Industry Conference

Cover detail of Conference flyer
The conference will address key topics those in the industry deal with on a regular basis. UK and industry representatives will lead sessions focused on fermentation, spent grains, warehouse issues, maturation, white oak and a grains panel.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 2, 2020) — Bourbon is an $8.6 billion industry in Kentucky and boasts more than 21,000 jobs and rising, accounting for a third of all distilling jobs in the United States. The James B. Beam Institute for Kentucky Spirits at the University of Kentucky will offer an inaugural industry conference Feb. 27 in the UK Gatton Student Center.

The Beam Institute is a collaboration between the UK colleges of Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and Economics; and Engineering. Its vision is to educate the next generation of distillers through a curriculum that develops skills for undergraduates, graduate students and professionals to succeed in the distilled spirits industry.

“We wanted to offer an information-rich learning experience for those who work every day to produce the top-quality products Kentucky is known for worldwide,” said Seth DeBolt, UK horticulture professor and Beam Institute director. “We are hoping this first conference will be educational, memorable and ultimately provide information and resources industry professionals can use in their jobs.”

The conference will address key topics those in the industry deal with on a regular basis. UK and industry representatives will lead sessions focused on fermentation, spent grains, warehouse issues, maturation, white oak and a grains panel. Exhibits and vendors will offer interactive displays and opportunities for networking. Attendees will also earn a certificate of continuing education for participation.

Confirmed speakers include:

The day will begin with registration at 7:30 a.m. EST and wrap up with closing remarks at 4 p.m. Early bird registration is $95 through Jan. 15. Student registration is $25. Beginning Jan. 16, registration is $195. The price includes the full day of educational sessions, exhibits, breakfast, lunch and snacks. Organizers are accepting vendors through Jan. 31. To register as a participant or vendor, visit the Eventbrite page at https://beam-institute-conference.eventbrite.com.

For more information, visit the Beam Institute website at http://beaminstitute.ca.uky.edu. Participants are welcome to stay after the conference and attend the Bourbon and Distilled Spirits Career Fair, which requires a separate registration, https://dwb.ca.uky.edu/BourbonCareerFair.

UK and Jim Beam-parent Beam Suntory are dedicated to the responsible consumption of alcohol and together will develop and expand successful alcohol awareness programs, including programming already funded by Beam Suntory.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion three years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" two years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for four straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.