Special South African gin is infused with elephant dung

International

A gin tasting session is held at the Botlierskop Private Game Reserve, near Mossel Bay, South Africa, Monday, Oct. 23, 2019. After about five sizeable bags of dung are collected for a batch of 3,000 to 4,000 bottles of the gin, the droppings are dried and crumbled, then washed to remove dirt and sand. Eventually only the remains of the fruits, flowers, leaves and bark eaten by the elephants are left behind. (AP Photo/Denis Farrell)

MOSSEL BAY, South Africa (AP) — The makers of a South African gin infused with elephant dung swear their use of the animal’s excrement is no gimmick.

The creators of Indlovu Gin, Les and Paula Ansley, stumbled across the idea a year ago after learning that elephants eat a variety of fruits and flowers and yet digest less than a third of it.

Tthey collect the dung themselves, using their bare hands.

The droppings are dried and crumbled, then washed to remove dirt and sand. Eventually only the remains of the fruits, flowers, leaves and bark eaten by the elephants are left behind.

Those botanicals are then sterilized and dried again. Eventually, the remains are infused in the gin, which they say gives the spirit a wooded, spicy, earthy taste.

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