A global superstar has bought big into a drinks producer near York.

Ellers Farm Distillery, based just north of Stamford Bridge, has announced “a major investment by and partnership with Ricky Gervais.”

The deal with Gervais sees him become Co-Owner of Ellers Farm and initially focuses on the Company’s leading brand, Dutch Barn Orchard Vodka but also covers Ellers Farm’s gins, liqueurs, and English single malt whisky.

The distillery says Gervais has been looking for an opportunity to partner with a sustainable and ethical spirits business and agreed to become a major part of Dutch Barn after learning about the ethos and workings of the company. And of course testing the product.

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Gervais said: “I’d been looking to invest in eco-friendly businesses for a while and as soon as I found Dutch Barn – I wanted in! I love the planet and I love a drink so it was the perfect combination.”

“On a serious note Dutch Barn really is a quality product. I love the fact that it’s done differently and I can’t wait to let everyone know about it. The exciting part for me is that I’ve been promised that I can try to make it a global brand in my own way. Something I can’t help but think they will regret.”

Ellers Farm was formed in 2021 and has been Carbon Neutral from Day One. 

Gervais’ investment follows on from Ellers Farm becoming a Certified B-Corp in September of this year. 

As an ethical employer, Ellers Farm says it has a unique profit share scheme where 20% of the Company’s profits go to the employees of the business and it operates fair pay ratios across the business.

Chris Fraser, Founder and Chairman of Ellers Farm Distillery said: “We are so excited to have Ricky join the team.  With so many hollow celebrity cash-for-face brand endorsement deals out there, we are really pleased to have forged an authentic partnership with Ricky involving both investment and creative leadership.

“Ricky will be an integral part of the business going forward and will help shape how Dutch Barn is seen around the world and helping us make Dutch Barn a global success.”

AIG Holdings, a global talent brand incubator, advised and invested in Ellers Farm as part of the transaction.

Ricky Gervais, 62, first came to prominence in the late 1990s, first appearing in comedy programmes on Channel 4.

He then made it big with The Office mock documentary series on the BBC during 2002-05.

Later programmes included Extras, and An Idiot Abroad before also gaining major attention by regular appearances on US talk shows like Letterman and presenting awards such as The Golden Globes.