On Wednesday, February 24 at 6:30 p.m., join us online on Zoom as we welcome Andy Fast, UNH Cooperative Extension State Specialist for the forest industry, for a talk about his efforts to revive cask making in New England using native white oak trees.
Watch the recording of this program at https://youtu.be/eoKX0mZCAM8.
Inside the 19th century Dinsmore Shop at Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth, master cooper Ron Raiselis keeps alive the nearly lost art of hand making casks. Once one of the most popular jobs in America, coopering— making and repairing wooden barrels and casks — is now viewed by many as a novelty profession or hobby.
Andy Fast, Extension state specialist for the forest industry, wants to change that.
“I’m trying to figure out how to reinvigorate a regional cooperage industry of an appropriate scale,” he explains. “Many local breweries and distilleries are interested in procuring local barrels but don’t have the means to do it.”
Fast is working with Raiselis as well as a cooper in Maine and one in Vermont to try to develop a viable niche forest products market that satisfies regional demand.