People who fly with Delta Air Lines now can choose to sip on a Black-owned vodka from Du Nord Social Spirits, the first Black-owned distillery in the US. The announcement was made by the airline on its website, and it is part of Delta’s program to support diversity.
“Working with suppliers who not only provide us with the best products but also help us offer products that are made by people who reflect the communities we serve is a meaningful demonstration of our core values at work,” said Mike Henny, Delta’s managing director onboard service operations.
The company’s owner Chris Montana never expected to hear from a major airline company to establish a business partnership.
“When Delta first reached out to us about this, it was nowhere near possible for us to do any of the things they were talking about. We had to envision a future where we were back on our feet, then able to do what they needed,” told KSTP TV.
As KSTP TV reported, Du Nord Social Spirits will give a portion of the sales from the Black-owned vodka to the Du Nord Foundation.
The distillery was founded in 2013, after Montana decided to open a business with his wife Shanelle, to diversify the craft alcohol community.
In 2020, Montana launched the Du Nord Foundation to help local businesses and entrepreneurs who were impacted by the unrest following the death of Floyd, among other assistance.
“The Du Nord Foundation was created, and we opened our doors to organizations and entrepreneurs displaced by the upheaval in our community. We leaned into doing what we could, and in that, we found ourselves motivated to do more, both in our business and our impact,” Montana explains in the company’s website.
Delta says that one of their commitments is to diversify their supplier base “to serve products that are made by people who reflect the world we live in.”
“Du Nord’s vodka stood out to us. It’s really smooth and easy to drink, and we knew it was perfect for our onboard offering,” Henny told Fortune. “We also learned of the great community work Du Nord does, and we knew the partnership would be a great fit,” he adds.
Du Nord Foundation vodka started being served on domestic Delta flights on Oct. 1, other Du Nord spirits will start to be offered on the airline in 2022 and eventually added to international flights as well, said Delta Air Lines in a statement.