Stakeholder Opportunity Matrix Identified Need for Creating Value Added Products
Feedback from the community demonstrated that there was a need to create an entrepreneurial venture that supports the community, creates jobs, builds wealth from the ground up, and puts money back into farmers’ pockets.
First Integration of Cider with Carpinteria-based Cidery
After years of ideation and investment, Blue Sky Center launched its first profit-sharing venture with regional cider maker, The Apiary.
Created Partnerships and Business Plan
Reinstated their beverage planning, created partnerships, and brainstormed what a successful venture would look like.
The Cuyama Beverage Company Takes Shape
Blue Sky Center saw an opportunity to invest in enterprises that add value to the agricultural industries in the Cuyama Valley and do not unnecessarily strain the critically overdrafted water basin.
Created through collaboration between businesses, farmers, ranchers and community members, Cuyama Beverage Company is a small-batch mead production and distribution company based in New Cuyama. All proceeds from every bottle of mead benefits regenerative economic development in the Cuyama Valley.
First Flavor is Released: Sage Honey Session Mead
All ingredients are sourced from small farms, rangelands, and desert cultivators in Cuyama Valley. Partnered with Rock Front Ranch to source honey that is single-sourced from wildflowers and bees native to the region.
Second Flavor is Released: Juju-Bee Session Mead
Partnered with Rock Front Ranch to provide this unique dessert fruit infusion. Watch SBCFAN’s storytelling video to learn more about why Jujubes are unique and suitable for the Cuyama Valley climate.
Growth and Scaling Up
Cuyama Beverage Company is an on-going success story – and plans to have two more products available by the end of 2021. Their goal is to celebrate what is made in Cuyama and grow the market for their products across the Central Coast. Their mead is available through their partner retailers, which include Cuyama Buckhorn, C&H Market, Ojai Beverage Company, Rainbow Bridge Market, Sage Cafe, Satellite Santa Barbara, Apiary, Casa Dumetz Wines, Full of Life Flatbread, and more.
- “This project is an investment in Cuyama Valley branded products that exemplify farming practices that are climate-specific, contribute to local food and job infrastructure, and showcase the abundance of the Cuyama Valley.”
- “The Cuyama Beverage Company is crafting resilience through regenerative economic development, developing incentives to grow at a scale supported by the climate, and celebrating the products they cultivate as part of a community’s culture.”