Figures reveal spirit's trade boost
Whisky needs Brexit ‘protection’ to maintain export record
Whisky sales are growing ‘signficantly’ (photo by Terry Murden)
Britain’s trade deficit would be almost 3% bigger without the contribution of whisky to exports, according to new analysis backing calls for a favourable post-Brexit trade deal.
Figures earlier this year revealed that Scotch whisky posted record-breaking exports in 2017, growing in both volume and value (by 1.6% and 8.9% respectively) to a total of £4.37bn – the equivalent of 1.23bn bottles.
The new analysis by the Scotch Whisky Association also reveals growth in blended scotch.
It says that, while the UK trade deficit reduced from £166bn in 2016 to £153bn in 2017, the deficit would be 2.9% greater without Scotch Whisky exports. Last year, of every £100 of goods exported from the UK, £1.30 was Scotch Whisky.
The analysis also shows that exports of single malt Scotch Whisky continue to grow, with an increase of 14% year-on-year to £1.17bn.
This is the second year in a row that exports of single malt have surpassed £1bn, reflecting a trend towards premium products in global markets.
Commenting on the analysis, chief executive of the SWA Karen Betts said: “More Scotch Whisky is enjoyed across the world than America, Canadian and Irish Whiskies combined.
“Single Malt continues to grow significantly, boosting again the value of our exports. There are signs too that the market for blended Scotch Whisky is improving.
“This is a welcome indicator of future growth. Blended Scotch is the solid foundation on which our global export success has been built.
“As Brexit approaches, it’s important that the government supports Scotch Whisky’s export success and ensures that access to EU and global markets is as good once the UK leaves the EU as it is today.
“This includes ensuring that Scotch whisky is properly protected through the Geographical Indication system.”