Draff [dræf]: the damp remains of malt after brew­ing. Often used as an appe­tiz­er or sup­ple­ment in ani­mal rations. So what is draff? Every liter of beer requires a min­i­mum 200g of grain. Scot­land is esti­mat­ed to pro­duce around 48,700 tonnes of draff each year, for beer only. Once fer­ment­ed and used to cre­ate that beau­ti­ful gold­en brew, the grain is no longer of use to the brew­ery. Most brew­eries and dis­til­leries offer it for free to local farm­ers as feed for their live­stock. For urban brew­eries this is some­times not pos­si­ble and the draff can become dif­fi­cult to get rid of.

Ini­tial­ly test­ing the use-abil­i­ty of draff from whisky pro­duc­tion, exper­i­men­ta­tion led to the inclu­sion of wastage from beer and gin. A vari­ety of organ­ic mate­ri­als can be used in alco­hol pro­duc­tion includ­ing bar­ley, wheat and rye for beer and whisky. Gin pro­duc­tion utilis­es juniper berries and each brand cre­ates their own flavours by dis­till­ing with their botan­i­cals of choice. These may include cin­na­mon, car­da­mon, orange peel and even peas!

The jour­ney of our Draff Mate­r­i­al begins straight after the mash­ing or dis­till­ing process. The grain and botan­i­cals are col­lect­ed and dried out as quick­ly as pos­si­ble in our work­shop. Heat and high pres­sure are then applied to our raw ingre­di­ents. This process is a key fac­tor in cre­at­ing a dense and reli­able mate­r­i­al. After years of experei­men­ta­tion we have dis­cov­ered the per­fect for­mu­la to turn spent grain and botan­i­cals into a mate­r­i­al that is durable, sus­tain­able and unique.

Once pressed the out­come is a final sheet mate­r­i­al with a sim­i­lar den­si­ty to an OSB Board. The mate­ri­al’s final look varies depend­ing on the grain or botan­i­cals used. The heat­ing process also influ­ences the colour­ing of the mate­r­i­al. With all of these fac­tors each piece is unique and can be tai­lored for the indi­vid­ual. From pieces of fur­ni­ture to dec­o­ra­tive cladding, Draff can be used in a vari­ety of design projects.