For the past few years Scotch whisky sales in China have been steadily dropping, due to a multitude of reasons.
This hasn’t been good for Diageo, the world’s leading drinks company, as their Scotch brands account for over a quarter of the company’s sales.
However, in the first half of Diageo’s 2016-2017 financial year, specifically, the six months leading up to the end of 2016, the company has reported a surprising 6 per cent increase in Scotch sales throughout the Chinese mainland. The growth came from sales of super deluxe brands, and from the continuously popular Johnnie Walker range.
Substantial growth was also reported in India with an 11 per cent rise in sales. In Thailand, a slight growth was seen, as the population mourned the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej.
Compared to Diageo’s 1 per cent growth last year, which marked the company’s first return to growth since 2013, the figures during the past few months show great promise for the rest of 2017.
In terms of single malts, Diageo’s Talisker and Knockando brands saw a 3 per cent increase in several European countries, including France and Greece.
In other news, after three years of declines, Scotch whisky exports reached a new high of £1bn in 2016.
The increases comprised of 4 per cent in volume and just over 3 per cent in value and marked whisky’s recovery for the first time since the £4bn high in 2012.
Single malts sales led the movement, with shipments rising by an amazing 9.6 per cent. Single malts now account for more than 25 per cent of Scotch whisky exports in value.
This increase may have been triggered by the Brexit vote with the pound reaching historic lows, making British goods much more affordable abroad. While shipments of Scotch were down by 1 per cent during the first half of 2016, they rose by 6.8 per cent in the second half of the year.
Have a look here for further news on how the whisky industry could be impacted by Brexit. The future is still uncertain, but the numbers show a clear growth for Scotch whisky, with single malts steadily gaining popularity.