Whisky set to grow to £2.44bn in next 3 years

By Nikkie Thatcher

- Last updated on GMT

Looking ahead: whisky is expected to grow significantly in the next three years
Looking ahead: whisky is expected to grow significantly in the next three years
Whisky will return to growth and will be worth £2.44bn by 2022 (up from £2.31bn in 2018), new research has predicted.

The UK Whisky Yearbook ​report, from Edrington-Beam Suntory revealed the whisky category will grow by £138m in the next three years – a 6% rise and compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 1.5% – and by more than 200,000 cases.

Total whisky sales

2018 (actual)

2022 (forecast)

CAGR

Total change (%)

Change

Volume

7.44m

7.65m

0.7%

2.7%

£201k

Value

£2.31bn

£2.44bn

1.5%

6%

£138.37m

CGA and Nielsen sales data fro 2018. Volume of 8.4-litre cases and total whisky value

Edrington-Beam- Suntory MD Mark Riley said: “Whisky is one of the most diverse and dynamic of the spirits categories.

“Our forecast shows it will see growth over the next three years. Bartenders and retailers tell us whisky is a key focus for them, with plans to invest in broadening their knowledge and range, ensuring they can accommodate the increasing appetite for the spirit from consumers in the on and off-trade.”

Driving this growth is set to be Scotch single malt category, which Edrington-Beam Suntory predicts to increase in value from £394m in 2018 to £439m in 2022.

Volume growth to 2022 for whisky categories

2018

2019 

Change 2018 to 2019 (%)

Change 2018 to 2019

2022

Irish

304.33

330.2

8.5

25.87

366.41

Single grain

89.18

109.24

22.5

20.07

179.78

Japanese

7.19

8.27

15

1.08

10.7

Canadian

10.52

12.42

18.1

1.9

14.2

Data from CGA and Nielsen. Volume of 8.4-litre cases

Value growth to 2022 for whisky categories

2019 (million)

Change 2018 to 2019 (%)

Change 2018 to 2019 (million)

2022 (million)

Irish

£135.42

£147.21

8.7

£11.78

£163.86

Single grain

£21.51

£26.03

21

£4.51

£42.15

Japanese

£8.1

£9.2

13.6

£1.1

£11.69

Canadian

£6.62

£7.86

18.8

£1.24

£9.02

The report also predicted American whiskey will grow to 2022 – up from £688m in 2018 to £742m in three years’ time.

Riley said: “Scotch single malt and American whiskies will drive future growth, continuing to attract new consumers to the whisky category and successfully appealing to existing customers with new expressions.

“Both are seeing customers trade up as they explore the categories, which is supporting the increase in the value and volume of sales.”

Further supporting the growth of whisky, the report said Irish whiskey will grow by £28.5m from its sales in 2018 to 2022 and is forecast to be worth almost £164m.

The rise of single grain whisky will see the value of sales almost double to £42.1m in 2022 (from £21.5m in 2018).

Future of whisky

Growth in sales of Japanese whisky will accelerate over the next three years as there will be a greater volume available for export, and supply has been the only major barrier to its growth.

The total value of sales will increase to £11.7m by 2022, marking 44% growth. Canadian whisky will also rise to become a category worth £9m in the next three years.

Riley added: “Irish and single grain whiskies have been real success stories over the past 12 months – sharing rapid growth on an already strong base of volume and value in the market.

“We expect both to play a greater role in shaping the wider market in the coming years. The supply challenges have arguably held back growth in Japanese and Canadian whiskies have eased.

“While there remains a challenge securing enough liquid from leading brands from both nations to satisfy UK demand, there is far greater supply forecast and we predict we will see growth as a result.”

Related topics: Spirits & Cocktails

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