SRUC Elmwood Hospitality students were introduced to the fascinating story of the famous Bon Accord soft drinks business when director Karen Knowles popped into the Cupar campus recently in an offshoot of work with Savour St Andrews.
Karen, the great great grandaughter of the man who created the company in 1903, provided an overview of a business which has undergone substantial rebranding in the last three years.
Bon Accord was famous throughout Scotland and as far south as Newcastle for its soft drinks, distinctive large flat bed lorries and recyclable glass bottles. Karen revived the company after a gap of some sixteen years.
It has been involved with Savour St Andrews activities, including the Chefs Taster Lunch which took place at the start of November, when the students used the knowledge they had gained to speak to visitors and offer tastings.
Karen will also be bringing the product to the St Andrew’s Day Dinner at the Old Course Hotel, Golf Resort and Spa on the evening of November 29th.
During the college visit students heard about rebranding of the drinks, distribution, product development, packaging, market research and manufacturing.
Karen also spoke of the threats, competition and the everyday challenges of small to medium size manufacturing – and also about the future plans which include a February 2019 launch of the classic cream soda flavour.
Hospitality lecturer Roz Graham said that the visit had been a great opportunity for students to see how a local company had relaunched and rebranded.
She added that Karen’s enthusiasm for her products shone through and that the history of the brand made a very interesting and motivating story.
“It has been great to come to SRUC Elmwood today and introduce the hospitality students to Bon Accord soft drinks.
“It’s fantastic to speak about the great opportunities in the food and drinks industry”.
Bon Accord Soft Drinks – Cloudy Lemonade, Ginger Beer and Rhubarb Soda – are full in flavour, but contain no refined sugar or artificial sweeteners. They are flavoured with 100% natural ingredients.
The company’s classic Tonic Water is light and fresh. It pairs well with the growing number of craft gins, allowing you to taste their subtle differences. Alternatively it makes a great standalone soft drink garnished with a large wedge of citrus fruit.
Karen and her business partner Nathan Burrough are seen below