Scotch whisky exports break new records28th March, 2012 by Martin Crummy
Scotch whisky exports hit a record £4.2 billion in shipment value last year, new figures show.
This is up 23% on 2010 according to figures unveiled by the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA). Scotch whisky now contributes £134 per second to the UK trade balance.
Exports to the US, the biggest market by value, rose by 31% to £654.9m, and in France, the product’s second largest export market, exports rose by 27% to £535.4m.
Rising demand in both emerging and more mature markets has resulted in export values increasing by an average of 10% a year over the last five years, said the SWA.
Gavin Hewitt, chief executive of the SWA, said: “Despite continuing economic uncertainty, Scotch whisky continues to meet increasing demand from all corners of the globe.
“It continues to appeal to consumers in countries such as the US and France and is being enjoyed by younger professionals in newer markets in Asia and Latin America.
“Exports have increased for seven years running contributing to delivering an export-led recovery, a focus for both the UK and Scottish governments.”
Direct exports to Singapore, which serves as a distribution hub for much of Asia, rose by 44% to £317.9m. Taiwan saw an increase of 44% to £155.2m.
In South America, Brazil was the fastest growing market by value with exports up 48% to £99.2m.
Distillers have also reacted to this increased demand, by investing record amounts in production capacity across Scotland.
In the last four years the Scotch whisky industry has invested over £1bn in new facilities.