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Plum big in Japan

Asian spirits, mostly Schochu, dominate the Japanese market, although the local plum liqueur is also important

THE TOTAL spirits market in Japan stands at around 140 million cases which places it in 6th place in the world ranking of spirits countries.  The market is dominated by Asian Spirits, mostly Schochu, which account for over three-quarters of the total spirits market, and are continuing to grow at over 6% per annum.

Liqueurs are the next most important category, accounting for 8% of the market, although this sector is also dominated by the local plum liqueur, known as Umeshu.

Flavoured Alcoholic Beverages are an important component of the market, accounting for a further 7% of the market, with very strong growth of 22% per annum. But again, it is the local product, known as Chu-Hi, and using Shochu as the alcohol base, which predominates.

Of true Western style spirits only Whisk(e)y, with 7% of the market, and Brandy, with 1% market share are significant, although both categories have experienced negative growth.

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