Wee dram for big profits
Scotch Whisky producers are raising a dram to their third-best ever export performance this month.
The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) has released figures for 2005, which show that both malt and blended whisky exports are up 4% in value over the previous year, reaching Â£2.3 billion.
The star markets were in Asia (up by 24% overall), with China witnessing a massive 86% increase in imports and South Korea and Taiwan posting increases of 24%. The US remained the most important market overall, though, up Â£35m to Â£373m.
The news closer to home was not quite so encouraging, however, since Europe did not mimic such a stellar performance. The Spanish market dropped 18% in value, and conditions in the UK remained difficult.
â€œAll the signs indicate that we are seeing a renaissance for Scotch in its international markets,â€ said Richard Burrows, chairman of the SWA. db May 2006