The idea for Back 40 Distillery started in 2015 very unexpectedly. Lorne Haugen and Rick Lazaruik longtime friends had just finished loading the smoker with 250 lbs. of deer sausage they made. Sitting down to enjoy a beverage in front of the smoker in Tofield Alberta they began discussing what kind of ingredients went into these commercially made spirits. They wondered if they could make distilled spirits but from simple quality ingredients?
We believed the type of ingredients that go into a product will affect it's quality. Lorne's daughter is celiac and they were making sausage and jerky that was 100% gluten free. Which evolved into researching and learning about fermentation and the distillation of gluten free spirits. The decision was made to use Alberta Sugar Beets from Taber, Alberta as their base ingredient. There is absolutely no grain in any of our products therefore we can say all of our products are 100% gluten free.
Why the name Back 40? Both Rick and Lorne had relatives and family friends that made their own liquor in the back field which was literally called the Back 40. In keeping with the idea of using simple and local ingredients they decided to use the name Back 40 Distillery. They were incorporated in February 2016 and opened in January 2017 in Camrose, Alberta.
In 2021 Steven and Katherine Zilkie, and Brad and Carlene Longacre joined Back 40 Distillery.