Biggest in capital for 150 years

Innis & Gunn to build brewery at Heriot-Watt R&D park

Innis Gunn Edinburgh brewery

The brewery will collaborate with the university

Innis & Gunn has chosen Heriot-Watt University’s Research Park as the site of its new brewery.

The park on the western fringe of Edinburgh is home to the world-renowned International Centre for Brewing & Distilling and the new brewery will be the largest to be built in the capital for 150 years.

A number of micro-breweries such as the Edinburgh Beer Factory at nearby Hermiston have also sprung up in recent years.

The tie-up is the UK’s first major collaboration of this type between a full-scale brewery and a university and will create a centre for brewing studies and applied learning on the world stage.

The collaboration will be on a par with other famed brewery universities like Weinstephan in Germany, and Heriot-Watt and Innis & Gunn anticipate a wealth of benefits to arise as a result.

Dougal Sharp Terry pic

Dougal Sharp: completing a journey

Innis & Gunn’s £3m ‘Beer Money’ crowdfunding campaign through the Seedrs platform will help fund the new brewery which the brewer plans to build on a two hectare site at Riccarton. It hopes to be operational in 2021.

The company aims to raise £3m through the crowdfund campaign which has been extended until 31 January. The brewery will also be part financed via a £15m loan.

The brewery will also house a visitor centre and offer tours. A Tap Room will be added at a later date. Up to 30 jobs will be added to the 45 office staff relocating from its offices in Edinburgh’s Randolph Crescent. 

Innis & Gunn and Heriot Watt University will announce details of academic collaborations,.

Company founder and master brewer, Dougal Sharp, said: “Building this brewery is a big step for Innis & Gunn in delivering our ambitious growth plan.

“We are creating a centre for brewing, collaboration and applied learning on the world stage. Innis & Gunn and Heriot-Watt University are both highly respected international brands renowned for their quality and forward thinking. This collaboration brings these two brands together in the most exciting way we can imagine.

“We hope to research new beers and brewing techniques, develop pioneering carbon and water saving technologies and create new products that respond to changing demands from consumers, as well as facilitating in-work learning for students.”

Edinburgh was once home to 40 breweries and Mr Sharp said he was “especially proud to be part of the revitalisation of Edinburgh as a world centre for brewing”.

He said: “Having our brewery here, where we first brewed Innis & Gunn, completes the journey I started back in 2003.  Building it next to a centre of excellence for brewing and distilling talent makes absolute business sense; cementing a long-standing relationship with the University and enabling us to add on-campus practical experience for students.”

Innis & Gunn’s brewery in Perthshire will continue to brew the Inveralmond Brewery range of cask and bottles ales and will focus on small scale experimentation and limited edition barrel-aged beers.

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