The distillery uses invasive European green crabs to make whiskey


You’ve probably never tasted whiskey like this before. Tamworth Distilling, which is based in New Hampshire, is now selling a whiskey made with invasive green crabs called Crab Trapper. You can buy a bottle of Crab Trapper for $65 – and feel good about using one of North America’s most destructive invasive species while you’re at it.

“People will hear crab whiskey and I’d venture to say three-quarters of them will say, ‘No, absolutely not,'” Tamworth Distilling product developer Will Robinson told NPR. “But if you can get them to enjoy it, they completely change their tune for the most part.”

bottle of whiskey
The whiskey is made with a bourbon base. Tamworth Distillery

The distillery adds crab juice made with green crabs, corn and spices to a bourbon base. “[It’s] it is best compared to a low country boil,” explains the distillery. “Crab is lightly present on the nose, accompanied by coriander and bay to soften any high notes.”

According to NOAA, European green crabs are considered one of the most invasive species in the marine environment. They were introduced to North America in the 1800s, likely by hitchhiking on merchant ships. They are now present along both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts—and threaten marine ecosystems and commercial crabbing operations in both countries. The species has few natural predators and is considered an aggressive hunter. Green crabs destroy sea grass and are known to eat juvenile king crabs and salmon.

Read further: Illinois announces new, more palatable name for Asian carp

Although the Crab Trapper whiskey blend is unlikely to cause harm to the green crab population in the Northeast, it is a creative solution that can raise awareness and mitigate the effects of the invasive species. Eating invasive species is considered one of the best ways to create demand for their removal, and a good number of invasives are quite palatable. Crab Trapper isn’t the only creative whiskey product that Tamworth Distilling produces. The company also sells a venison flavored whiskey called Deerslayer.





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