British gin is taking over the world

By Nicholas Robinson

- Last updated on GMT

Around the world: UK gin is a top seller
Around the world: UK gin is a top seller

Related tags International trade

Britain is the beating heart of the global gin industry, with three quarters of all exported gin coming from this island, and with Scotland accounting for two thirds of UK gin production.

That’s according to the Wine & Spirit Trade Association (WSTA), which said there was no sign of the gin bubble bursting just yet.

More than half of the world’s gin exports come from Scotland, delegates at a WSTA event celebrating the country’s booming gin trade were told.

“The Scots have a long and rich history of gin distilling, which saw the country open 12 new distilleries last year, representing a quarter of all new distilleries opened up across the UK, the equivalent of a new distillery every month,” said the WSTA.

‘Demand for British gin’

“Internationally, three out of every four bottles of gin imported round the world is from the UK, illustrating the demand for British gin across the globe.”

In terms of value British gin makes up 69% of all gin exports around the world, accounting for £422m out of the £641m total.

Despite warnings that inflation could significantly increase the price of gin​ for fanatics, sales are expected to continue to rise.

UK gin sales broke the £1bn mark earlier this year, six months ahead of forecasts, the organisation added.

WSTA chief executive Miles Beale said: “Nationally and internationally, UK gin is growing both its sales and its reputation at phenomenal speed.

Gin production worth £1.76bn

Gin production is worth £1.76bn to the UK’s economy and UK spirits industry, supporting nearly 300,000 jobs. The continued growth of gin means that VAT and duty contributions to the Exchequer are likely to hit the £500m mark in 2017.

Meanwhile, experts at The Morning Advertiser’s Future Trends: Spirits event​ in London last month debated the longevity of gin’s future.

Gin writer and educator David T Smith said: “Even back in 2011, people were saying there were too many gins around. But authenticity and quality is somewhat of a guard against the gin bubble bursting.”

CGA Strategy commercial director Graeme Loudon said: “Traditionally, it’s been the real premium niche brands that have been driving growth, but we’ve seen some mainstream ones returning to growth. With so many new brands coming into the market I feel it’s continuing to grow, but at a slower rate.”

Related topics Spirits & Cocktails

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