Diageo toasts record Scotch sales
SCOTCH whisky exports, which account for a quarter of all UK food and drink sold abroad, rose to a record high after a rebound in the US and France, the two biggest markets.
Exports advanced to £3.13bn (€3.4bn) in 2009 from £3.06bn a year before, the Edinburgh-based Scotch Whisky Association said in an emailed statement yesterday. Sales rose 4pc by volume and 3pc in value.
"Scotch whisky distillers have delivered record exports in the face of a global economic downturn," Paul Walsh, chief executive officer of Diageo Plc, the world's largest liquor maker, and chairman of the association, said in the statement.
"It is an impressive performance, underscoring the importance of Scotch whisky to the UK economy."
Volumes to France and the US rose 12pc after declining at least 8pc in 2008, the association said.
Sales to the European Union fell 1pc last year to £1.26bn. Sales to Central and South America jumped 18pc, while exports to North America increased 13pc.