Boost for Scotch Whisky as new London office opens
03 Dec 2015
Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss hails global
The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) has today celebrated the
opening of offices in London, marking the growing success of one of
the UK's most successful industries and exporters, the SWA and
Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss announced today.
The move across the border to the financial capital of Europe
marks growing investment in Scotland's booming Scotch Whisky trade,
helping generate more jobs across the UK. The new office will be
the largest permanently staffed presence the SWA has ever had
Elizabeth Truss hailed the £5 billion contribution Scotch Whisky
already makes to the economy and welcomed greater collaboration
between UK Government and industry to create more jobs, attract
more investment and drive up exports through the SWA's new London
At an official opening the Secretary of State described the
whisky industry as exemplary, not just for food and drink
businesses but all UK businesses, on seizing opportunities and
entering new international markets.
Environment Secretary, Elizabeth Truss said:
"Whisky is at the forefront of Britain's food and drink
revolution, helping to drive the UK's global reputation for
world-beating quality and authenticity. It is the powerhouse behind
our £100 billion food and drink industry and is a global export
success with 38 bottles leaving our shores every
"Over the next five years, we want to unleash the potential of
Britain's finest food and drink producers by boosting exports,
securing investment and flying the flag for British produce both at
home and abroad. We will continue to work closely with the SWA and
industry to ensure they have the support, skills and opportunities
to take risks and gain access to emerging markets. It is yet more
proof of how we are stronger together in the United Kingdom."
The SWA today (Thursday 3 December) held the lunchtime event to
mark the opening of its new London office, attended by MPs,
government officials, ambassadors, diplomats, think tanks and
Scotch Whisky is shipped to almost 200 markets worldwide and
exports are worth around £4 billion annually. The industry adds
£5bn a year in value to the UK economy and supports more than
40,000 jobs, including many in the supply chain outside Scotland.
As well as strengthening the SWA's links overseas, the London
office will develop relationships across Whitehall and Westminster
and support five jobs.
David Frost, SWA chief executive, said:
"We believe other industries can learn from the success of
Scotch Whisky. We are keen to work in collaboration with the
government to help grow exports and the wider UK economy.
"The Scotch Whisky industry is going through a time of
expansion. There are now 117 distilleries in Scotland, with seven
opening in the last year or so. About 40 new distilleries are
currently being planned or built to meet demand for the quality
"Our London office, near Westminster, will give us even better
access to decision makers in the UK and internationally."
The SWA, headquartered in Edinburgh, was established more than
100 years ago. The trade body works to sustain Scotch Whisky's
place as the world's leading high-quality spirit drink and its
long-term growth worldwide.
The London office is headed by Sarah Dickson, director of global
affairs, responsible for the SWA's international and European Union
business. Dickson was HM Ambassador to Guatemala and Honduras
before joining the SWA earlier this year.
Notes to editors
Guests at the event at the London Doubletree Hilton, Westminster
were offered a Scotch Whisky Maltberry Sour cocktail, containing
fresh British blackberries. Pictures of the event are available on
request on the afternoon of 3 December.
SWA media contact: Rosemary Gallagher, head of communications,
0131 222 9230/07432 605385 or email email@example.com
For information on the Scotch Whisky Association visit