David Cameron’s father-in-law is launching his own whisky label

David Cameron’s father-in-law is planning to take on the Hebridean whisky market by launching his own spirits label.

Viscount Astor will compete against Jura Distillery, which has been manufacturing single malt scotch since 1810.

William Waldorf Astor III, who is married to Samantha Cameron’s mother Viscountess Annabel Astor, announced plans to open a distillery on the Scottish Isle of Jura last month in a series of applications to the Intellectual Property Office (IPO).

The aristocrat registered Astor Whisky, Corran Whisky, Glenbatrick Whisky, and Lord Astor Whisky with the IPO on 31 August and 1 September.

Talks are already underway, and Viscount Astor is expected to submit a formal planing application to Argyle and Bute Council later this year, according to the Daily Record.

Earlier this year, the aristocrat also trademarked the name the Jura Jerky Company alongside his son James, a Hong Kong financier who is making plans to launch new business venture as a venison jerky and spirits manufacturer.

Astor, who owns the 20,000-acre Tabert Estate on Jura, joined the House of Lords as a Conservative in 1973.

He married Annabel Astor in 1976, shortly after her divorce from Sir Reginald Adrian Berkeley Sheffield.

Jura is already home to one whisky manufacturer, the Jura Distillery, which is located on the southernmost point of the island. Bought by Alliance Global Group in 2014, the Jura Distillery has been producing single malt scotch for more than 200 years. During peak production times, the distillery employs roughly 15 people.

It is not yet known where Viscount Astor will house his new spirits distillery.

“A distillery has been discussed,” said a council spokesperson, “but it has not formally come to the community council yet.”

The single malt scotch whisky market has ballooned in recent years. Exports of the drink topped £1bn for the first time in 2016, while the value of rare Whiskies up for auction has also soared by over 90%.

Typically, new distilleries produce blended whiskies or gin to provide an initial income while a single malt is in production.

Council officials claim that Viscount Astor’s plans for a spirits business could boost the local economy by providing much-needed employment on the island, which has a population of just over 200.

Some 1.7 million tourists visited Scottish whisky distilleries in the same year, spending more than £53m in the process, according to the Scotch Whisky Association.

A new distillery on the island could provide jobs for around 12 people.

“The estate/ farming-type thing is on the downturn so any other type of stable employment is going to be very welcome.”

Argyle and Bute council has been approached for comment.

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