GORHAM, Maine — Lone Pine Brewing Company in Gorham is donating money from its new craft hard seltzer to protecting Maine's environment and the very water its drinks contain.
Tom Madden, a co-founder of Lone Pine, said the brewery is donating 1 percent of its profits from the new drink to the Sebago Clean Waters Fund. Nearly every brewery in Greater Portland gets the water for its beers (and seltzers, in Lone Pine's case) from Sebago Lake.
According to Sebago Clean Waters, Sebago Lake is one of only 50 surface drinking water supplies in the country that requires no filtration before treatment. The organization said one out of six Mainers (more than 200,000 people) and Maine’s fastest-growing businesses depend on this pristine resource.
"The forests that serve as the wellspring for these waters create, filter, and sustain this exceptionally pure water supply," organizers write on the website.
Madden said the water's purity allows brewers to perform minimal water treatment, saving them lots of money on expensive equipment.
In the month-and-a-half of production of the seltzer, Lone Pine has been able to send about $1,000 to Sebago Clean Waters Fund, Madden said.
"Not only to protect it for the sake of recreation, our drinking water, but also now that we're so intimately tied to it where our product is mostly water, and we rely on it to make our product as good as we can, to be able to give back is just a full-circle experience," said Madden.
Lone Pine is one of 38 breweries part of the Maine Brewshed Alliance, a coalition of breweries dedicated to protecting Maine's watersheds through environmental stewardship.
Lone Pine's seltzer launched a month-and-a-half ago and was in development for a year-and-a-half. Lone Pine is the only Maine brewery offering its own brand of craft hard seltzer. The company offers five flavors: its most popular is the "Oh-J" flavor, named and styled after the brewery's orange juice-flavored IPA.