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Callum McIntosh bending down to inspect malt at PortgordonCallum McIntosh, Production Assistant based at our Portgordon Maltings in Scotland, goes above and beyond when it comes to service.

One moment, he might be in a Teams meeting talking about blends of distilling malt, or checking barley moisture levels in storage bins on a local farm.

The next moment, he might be giving cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to someone who’s been in a car accident, or dousing a fire with water through a high pressure hose.


Calum McIntosh in his fireman's uniformThe moment he was 18, Callum followed in his father’s footsteps, joining the local Buckie branch of the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service as an on-call firefighter. He remains in that vital role today, with the blessing of Crisp Malt.

He did a four year apprenticeship as a plumbing and heating engineer for a local company, later taking on a temporary job at our Portgordon Maltings during harvest time. Temporary turned to permanent and he was made Production Assistant.

Distilling Manager, Richard Lake, explains:

No surprise that with his experience in the fire brigade, Callum has special responsibilities connected with fire risk and compliance assessment.



Other duties include liaising with production operators on steeping schedules; making sure the effluent plant has room for the effluence from the next steep; ensuring the blends meet the specs agreed with specific distilleries; showing customers around; and monitoring the barley kept in farm silos so that it reaches the maltings in best possible condition.

Callum McIntosh explains:

I really like working closely with our operators and engineer. As a team, it feels like we can take on almost any challenge. Everyone here is really practical, and we all bring different skills, so we can generally solve problems with pretty neat solutions. I’ve been involved in some great project work too, such as the building of the new peat malt kiln. It’s so good to support the team in clearing the old one away, taking delivery of the new kit; it will be great to see once the project is finalised. It’s satisfying to know it’ll be producing top
quality peated malt for world famous distilleries.

Malt Storage Bins at Portgordon Maltings site in ScotlandUndaunted by the workload involved in his production assistant and fire officer roles, 22 year old Callum is keen to study. He has his Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) certificate; is nearly there with his Fundamentals in Malt (FIM); and is aiming for Control of SubstancesHazardous to Health (COSHH); and Malt Diploma sometime in the not too distant future.

His final words are:

I enjoy it. I wouldn’t do it otherwise.


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