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Pernod Ricard builds €25m distillery for Japanese gin brand

Pernod Ricard has started construction on a new €25 million carbon-neutral distillery for its Japanese gin Ki No Bi, increasing production capacity for the brand by five times.

Pernod Ricard builds €25m distillery for Japanese gin brand

A traditional ceremony marked the start of construction for a new carbon-neutral distillery in Kameoka City, Kyoto Prefecture this week.

The distillery, which the French multinational has said will cost the equivalent of £21m to build, will be powered entirely by electricity using only renewable energy sources such as wind, water, solar and geothermal energy.

Pernod Ricard, which owns 240 brands including Absolut and Jameson, will increase capacity of Ki No Bi by at least five times once the new site is completed, the company has said. The carbon-neutral site is due to open in the autumn of 2025. Ki No Bi, which means ‘the beauty of the seasons’ in Japanese, was launched in 2016, made using rice spirit and 11 botanicals including yellow yuzu, Akamatsu wood chips, bamboo, gyokuro tea and green sanshō berries.

Pernod Ricard builds €25m distillery for Japanese gin brand

Antonio Sanchez Villareal, managing director, The Kyoto Distillery, said the construction was a means for the company to prepare “for future growth amid the strong demand for Japanese gin and Japanese craft spirits”.

According to The Japan News, the export volume of Japanese gin has surged about 850-fold in the five years to 2022. Trade statistics show that Japan exported 5 kiloliters of gin in 2016. This figure soared since 2017 and reached 4,248 kiloliters in 2021. Suntory’s Roku Gin has played a big part in the rise of Japanese gin in international markets. Launched in 2017, the brand is now available in 60 markets worldwide.

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