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Scotch Whisky Exports To U.S. Fall 25% After Single Malt Tariffs

June 29, 2020

The 25% tariff imposed on single malt Scotch whiskies in the U.S. last October is hampering what has been a vibrant upscale spirits segment in recent years. According to the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA), Scotch exports to the U.S. have declined by 25% since the tariff took effect.

“The tariffs make Scotch uncompetitive in the U.S. against other spirits and companies are losing sales and market share to competitor products,” said SWA chief executive Karen Betts. “This is hurting the industry at home as well as threatening the livelihoods of Americans who work in distribution, marketing, and hospitality in the U.S.”

With the U.S. now adding gin to the list of U.K. exports potentially in line for tariffs, U.K. distillers have further cause for concern. Betts noted that 70% of U.K.-made gin is produced in Scotland, which could see another blow to its export business if the U.S. follows through on its latest threat.—Daniel Marsteller

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