Celebrating Scotch - a global success story

06 Dec 2017

Industry gathers in Scotland Office, London

The Scotch Whisky industry celebrated its position as the UK's leading food and drink export at a reception in the Scotland Office in London last night.

MPs, members of the industry and media were among those who gathered at Dover House in Whitehall, hosted by Rt Hon David Mundell MP, Secretary of State for Scotland, and the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA).

Scottish Secretary David Mundell said: "It was a pleasure to welcome the Scotch whisky industry to Dover House.  The UK Government is committed to supporting the industry, and I was pleased we were able to freeze spirit duty in the Budget. Whisky is a huge part of Scotland's economy, and I am confident that the industry will make the most of Brexit, and continue to go from strength to strength."

Also speaking on the evening, Peter Gordon of Wm Grant & Sons and SWA incoming chairman, said: "As always, we are grateful to the Secretary of State for Scotland for hosting our Scotch Whisky gathering in the magnificent Dover House.

"The history of William Grant and his business has been immersed in the Scotch Whisky industry.  Scotland is home to an industry which now exports to more than 180 countries around the world. It is a product renowned for its history and its quality, and is an industry that creates jobs and support communities all across Scotland. I am proud to be part of this success and I'm looking forward to playing my part as chairman of the SWA."

Peter Gordon is replacing Pierre Pringuet of Pernod Ricard as SWA chair. He steps down after holding the position for three years.

SWA chief executive Karen Betts thanked the UK Government for its support of the industry.

Betts said: "I'd like to thank the Scottish Secretary for hosting us this evening for our annual celebration of Scotch Whisky, recognising the industry's importance to the entire UK economy. And thanks to him and his team for the duty freeze last month which was welcomed by the industry.

"When I joined the Association in May, as only the eighth chief executive in its 105 year history, I took on one of the most exciting and interesting jobs I could hope for, and a fascinating challenge.

"The key challenge for us now is to take our exporting strength and use it to ensure the industry continues to grow through Brexit and beyond, and continues to support thousands of jobs and millions of pounds of investment. We should also take advantage of opportunities along the way."

Ends

Notes to editors
SWA media contact: Rosemary Gallagher, head of communications, 0131 222 9230/07432 605385 or email rgallagher@swa.org.uk