European Spirits Industry Comes to Edinburgh

10 Jun 2013

SpiritsEUROPE, the body which represents producers of spirit drinks, is holding its annual assembly and congress in the Scottish capital this week.  Gavin Hewitt, chief executive of the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA), is currently the president of spiritsEUROPE.

Around 80 delegates will be at the Radisson Blu hotel on the Royal Mile to hear speakers discuss a range of relevant topics including social responsibility, alcohol and health, tackling underage drinking and the impact of taxation. Speakers include Elaine Hindal, chief executive officer at the Drinkaware Trust and Mark Gorman, senior vice-president - government relations at DISCUS, the spirit drinks body in the USA.

Delegates will attend a gala dinner at Edinburgh Castle and they will also have the opportunity to visit The Famous Grouse Experience at Glenturret distillery.

Paul Skehan, director general of spiritsEUROPE, said: "Scotland is renowned throughout the world for Scotch Whisky so it is appropriate that the spirits industry is gathering in Edinburgh this week. The European spirits sector contributes 32 billion euros (£27.2 billion) a year in taxes and is hugely important to a number of economies."

Gavin Hewitt, spiritsEUROPE president and SWA chief executive, said: "I'm delighted to welcome senior representatives from the European drinks industry to Scotland. Scotch Whisky is at the heart of the European industry. It will give us the chance to appeal to government ministers about the danger of minimum unit pricing (MUP). It is threat to the drinks industry which underpins many economies."


For further information please contact Rosemary Gallagher, SWA communications manager on 0131 222 9230/07432 605 385 or email

SpiritsEUROPE assembly and congress is in Edinburgh from 9 to 11 June.

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