brand stories | apr. 19, 2021

Sustainability Summit 2019

A group of people outside examining the agave plants

Hacienda Patrón Sustainability Summit

The Hacienda Patrón Sustainability Summit was created to provide a venue for expanding knowledge and raising awareness of sustainability issues in the hospitality industry. At Patrón, sustainability and social responsibility have always been pillars of our brand, and our inaugural Summit brought together a diverse group of industry professionals to share their unique perspectives. 

We believe that sustainability is more than a conversation about recycling limes or composting waste at the end of your shift. Sustainability is a multi-level, inter­dis­ci­pli­nary conversation, building from the ground up with food systems and water conservation and branching out into urban planning, agricultural systems, agave farming and harvesting – and of course including green bar practices.

The Summit took place over three days at Hacienda Patron, in the heart of Atotonilco El Alto in Jalisco Mexico. The event was focused on education, but also included a multi-dimensional approach to learning, with meals and activities woven into seminar sessions. Featured meals included the day 1 Comida Asada”, a locally sourced meal in which traditional Mexican foods were cooked over flame and paired with tequila cocktails. On Day 2, guests were treated to an incredible Pre-Hispanic Mexico” meal which included traditional dishes such as frog legs, Frijoles Charros, and hand-made tortillas. Many of the items served at the Hacienda are sourced locally from our Gardens or from the town of Atotonilco.

Chef and artist Krystal Mack, an attendee, serves on the Advisory Board of Julia Turshen’s Equity At The Table initiative. Krystal’s work has been featured in Food & Wine Magazine and she was recently featured on the Cherry Bombe 100” list by Cherry Bombe Magazine as a food industry Change Agent. Krystal presented us with a breakfast education and experience which highlighted the quest for personal human sustainability. Each item at the table was representative of an essential element of self awareness and preservation.

Other featured presenters included Edward Hill presenting on the essential role of urban planning in the sustainability conversation, and H. Joseph Ehrmann presented on Green Bar Concepts. Paco Soltero from Patrón also spoke directly to Patrón’s sustainability efforts at the distillery and beyond. Attendees were able to walk the agave fields with agave farmer Fernando Plascencia to learn about sustainability issues in agave agriculture.

As the Summit came to a close, the group observed Earth Day with a reforestation effort in a local park, joining townsfolk in planting 300 trees for the local community. Attendees were encouraged to pick up a shovel and a tree and give back to the land of Mexico by planting to provide shade for children and families to enjoy in the park. In Guadalajara a local artist and papermaker guided us in making Agave fiber paper to take home as a memento of the experience. At the end of three very long days we enjoyed drinks and conversation about the experience at a locally owned restaurant and hotel in Guadalajara.

While the Sustainability Summit was postponed in 2020, there are plans to pick up where we left off in 2022 with expanded education and broader reaching audience to discuss the most important conversations in the hospitality industry. We hope to have the opportunity to share our learnings with everyone who places importance on sustainability and the future of our planet.

Author: Stephanie Teslar

photo credit: Shannon Leigh

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