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Scotch Whisky Value Surges 16% In U.S., Even As Volume Slips

April 2, 2013

Scotch whisky exports to the U.S. continue to show a strong premiumization trend, as their value climbed 16% last year to £758 million ($1.15b), despite a 2% decline in volume. The Scotch market’s high end has been driven in part by the dynamism of the single malt segment, which rose 5% in the U.S. last year by volume, according to Impact Databank.

According to the Scotch Whisky Association, global Scotch exports were up 1% by value to £4.3 billion ($6.5b) in 2012, but fell 5% by volume as a tax hike in France—the category’s largest export market by volume—and economic weakness in other European countries blunted demand. Scotch volume to France and Spain dropped 25% and 20% last year respectively.

Elsewhere, South Africa (-15%) and South Korea (-15%) also saw falling shipment volume, while, on the positive side, India (+5%), Germany (+5%), Mexico (+11%), Venezuela (+12%), China (+4%) and Poland (+18%) posted increases. Each of those countries saw value rise ahead of volume, suggesting Scotch’s tilt toward premiumization isn’t limited to the U.S. market.


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