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Family Business Top 100 Recognition For Iain Stirling


We are delighted to announce that Iain Stirling of Arbikie has been included within the inaugural Family Business United ‘Family Business Top 100,’ which recognises the exceptional contribution of individuals and their work within a family business.


Recognition in respect of:

  • Inspirational Leadership

  • Next Generation

  • Champion of Change & Innovation

Arbikie Estate is a family-owned working farm perched on the east coast of Angus; here crop is king. They painstakingly plant, sow, tend and harvest the fields that make up Arbikie. They are craftsmen of the soil.


This is an estate profoundly shaped by its environment: the red sandstone-tinted soil, the powerful sea and the turbulent weather give Arbikie a character found nowhere else. And here, situated where land meets sea, sits their distillery – created from an ancient barn, it is a place with all the ingredients required to produce authentic spirits of the highest quality.


The Stirling family has been farming at Arbikie for four generations. From father to son, they have gained an intuitive understanding of the land; sowing and harvesting the crops that now create Arbikie’s range of field to bottle spirits.


Farming in the Stirling family goes back even further – since 1660, initially on the west coast. Their lands passed through seven generations until great uncle Bill moved to Lunan Bay on the east coast of Angus in the 1920’s. He then passed it to the grandfather of the current generation, John, who then passed the land over to their father, Alec Stirling, who expanded the acreage.


Brothers John, Iain and David are the visionaries and driving force behind the Arbikie Distillery. As with all farming families, the brothers grew up working around the farm, and it is this hands-on experience that gave them a deep understanding and respect for the land.


Despite pursuing careers away from farming, they have always stayed attached to the family lands – and now with the opening and growth of the Arbikie Highland Estate distillery, they have returned to drive this exciting and continually evolving venture.


Iain is a pioneer and great ambassador for Arbikie, promoting the brand around the world and embracing their story as part of the brand. Their pioneering pursuit and adoption of best practice is remarkable and driven from top down leadership and Iain is a key component of this drive, determination and passion. Iain is undoubtedly worthy of his inclusion in the Family Business Top 100.

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