Karen Yong, Copalli team member

Karen Yong is a Distillery Operator at Copal Tree Distillery and the right hand to our Head Distiller. Karen grew up in Belize and has been a member of the team since the Distillery began in 2016. In addition to monitoring the fermentation and distillation, Karen oversees blending and bottling operations. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Biotechnology from Swinburne University of Technology, in Malaysia, where she studied Industrial Microbiology and Environmental Biotechnology among other subjects.

Tell us about your job… I am one of the distillery operators here at Copal Tree Distillery. I am in charge of the fermentation and distillation processes.

How long have you worked with the Copal Tree Distillery?… I have been working with Copal Tree Distillery for about 5 years.

Tell us about your life in Belize… Living in Belize has allowed me to interact with so many people of diverse races. I am learning new things every day by interacting with various people. Belize also has a variety of breath-taking landscapes that are adorned with precious flora and fauna. Although small, Belize is a very beautiful country.

What do you do in your spare time?… Although I am just an amateur, I do enjoy photography. I love taking random pictures of flora, fauna, and everyday things that happen to catch my attention. Once in a while, I do enjoy losing myself in a good book too. (Check out some of Karen’s photos, below.)

photo by Karen Yong
photo by Karen Yong

Why is sustainability important to you?… Sustainability is important because it keeps everything at a near-balanced state. When we live sustainably, what we take can be replenished at a rate that won’t cause harm to the environment. It also allows the other generations after ours to enjoy and experience the resources that we currently have.

What would you like people to know about Belize?… If you are into photography or eco-tourism, Belize is definitely a right place for you. Not only does Belize have a rich cultural diversity, but there are also plenty of beautiful and breath-taking sceneries. Whether it is jungle trekking, snorkeling, scuba-diving, or even just experiencing the local food and culture, Belize has it all.

What is your favorite way to drink Copalli Rum?…  My favorite way to drink Copalli Rum would be a simple yet refreshing Mojito using Copalli white rum. The union of the mint, lime juice, Copalli White Rum, and soda water creates a synergistic harmony that cools down and refreshes your body; especially on a really hot day.


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