The export value of the Scotch market now sits 10.8% above its value for the same six months in 2017.
Single Malts continue to grow in popularity, with exports up 14.4% to £550 million in the first six months of the year, according to the Association, with Single Malts now making up 28% of the value of all Scotch shipped overseas.
Exports of Blended Scotch Whisky grew too, rising 8.9% to an export value of £1.26 billion.
The European Union remains the biggest regional destination for Scotch, accounting for 39% of export volume and 31% of value.
This underscores the need for the UK to achieve a smooth Brexit as the real downsides of a ‘no deal’ Brexit could have an impact on growth in this developed regional market, stated the SWA which also warns that the industry needs support at home if Scotch Whisky is to sustain growth in the long term.
The US remains Scotch’s largest export market by value, worth over £400 million with France being the largest by volume at nearly 7.5 million cases. Exports to China in the first six months were up 34.8% to £36.3 million, with Indian sales increasing by 44.4% to over £56 million.
With the UK Budget just over a week away, the SWA has called for a duty freeze on Scotch Whisky which will prove the UK government’s determination to champion the industry and back Scotch’s continuing export success story.
“It’s hugely encouraging to see Scotch Whisky exports continue to grow – and at double-digit rates – in the first half of this year,” said the SWA’s Chief Executive Karen Betts, “As the UK leaves the EU, the industry wants to continue to trade with the EU as easily as it has while being able to pursue growth opportunities globally.
“But in order to flourish overseas, the industry needs support at home. Competitive tax rates are crucial, enabling producers to start-up, scale-up and invest for growth, such that they continue to be the dynamic job-creators, employers, tax-generators and exporters that they are.
“Right now, £3 in every £4 spent on Scotch in the UK is collected in tax by HM Treasury. The industry believes this tax burden is too high and is more likely to stifle growth than nurture it. That is why we are calling on the Chancellor to freeze duty on Scotch Whisky in the Autumn Budget.”