In a recent report, the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) reported that in 2022 the industry contributed a substantial £7.1 billion to the UK economy through Scotch production, sales and distribution, with a notable £5.3 billion enriching Scotland’s economic landscape.
With regards to employment, the sector has proven instrumental in job creation. A total of 66,000 jobs were generated across the UK, with a significant proportion—41,000—being situated in Scotland. Over the past decade, the industry has contributed to the creation of an impressive 24,000 jobs, highlighting its positive influence on employment dynamics.
The global appeal of Scotch whisky is underscored by an impressive 31% increase in exports between 2018 and 2022, reaching a record-breaking £6.2 billion. This export figure accounts for a substantial 77% of all Scottish food and drink exports, positioning Scotch whisky as a prominent contributor to international trade.
Mark Kent, Chief Executive of the SWA, outlines the importance of government support, particularly in anticipation of the UK spring budget and the general election later this year. The UK government has consistently championed the Scotch whisky industry, implementing measures such as 10 cuts or freezes in duty over the last 11 budgets and removing tariffs imposed on the US market. Robust efforts toward global trade agreements are underway to safeguard the unique characteristics and reputation of Scotch whisky.