Charity auction celebrating past work of women in whisky has raised $94k to empower future generations

April 12, 2024
By Cody Profaca

A final count of proceedings from the Whisky Auctioneer’s inaugural Demeter Collection auction has been measured at £49,065.75 (over AUD $94,000), all of which will be donated to the OurWhisky Foundation. 

The auction, the first of its kind specifically dedicated to women in whisky, featured 19 lots commemorating women who have made a difference in whisky. 

In total, the 19 lots drew a final hammer price of £43,614, with additional proceedings from the donated buyer’s commission adding £5,451.75. Whisky Auctioneer waived all auction seller fees and donated all buyer’s commission for the charity auction event. 

“It has been a privilege for us to support the OurWhisky Foundation in providing not just a platform for this ground-breaking sale, but also to promote the contributions of women to the industry as a whole,” said Joe Wilson, Head Curator and Spirits Specialist at Whisky Auctioneer.

“From the distilleries and independent bottlers who generously donated to the bidders from across the world, it is incredible to see whisky lovers come together to make a real difference.”

Dubbed the Demeter Collection after the Greek goddess of grain, the auction took place from March 29 to April 8 to coincide with Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day. 

All funds raised from the auction will be passed on to the OurWhisky Foundation, the world’s first non-profit dedicated to supporting, recognising, and empowering women in whisky. This donation will be invested across various initiatives such as its mentorship programme, an innovative series of trade and consumer networking and tasting events tailored to women, and the development of its online magazine, The Cut, into a valuable educational resource.

By the end of the year, the OurWhisky Foundation mentorship program will have directly supported over 200 womens in their careers. Applications for the next intake round will be opened next week.

“We’re blown away by the fantastic amount raised from the inaugural Demeter Collection,” said OurWhisky Foundation’s founder Becky Paskin. 

“The OurWhisky Foundation provides much-needed support and guidance for women in whisky as well as the wider industry, but we are in desperate need of funding if we’re to continue providing our services. 

“Thanks to Whisky Auctioneer, all our lot donors and the hundreds of bidders coming together over a shared love of a dram, the fantastic amount raised will help us continue making whisky an inclusive space for everyone.”

Winning bids for the 19 whiskies came from the UK, USA, Ireland, Latvia and Belgium. The top bid, with a hammer price of £12,500 (almost AUD $24,000) was claimed by a Dalmore 44 year old created in honour of Margaret Nicol’s five decades as blend controller at Whyte & Mackay. 

In second place, purchased for £9,700 (over AUD $18,500), was a 20 year old Ardbeg commemorating master blender Gillian MacDonald.

More information about the inaugural whisky auction can be read here.

OurWhisky Mentorship Programme members
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