ENTERPRISE minster Fergus Ewing raised a glass to Scotland’s thriving whisky industry when he toasted the success of one of the country’s distillers.
The BenRiach Distillery Company welcomed the Scottish Government minister to its headquarters and bottling plant in Edinburgh where he heard first hand about its global activities.
The specialist contract bottling company, which owns the BenRiach and GlenDronach single malt distilleries, has five bottling lines at its Newbridge Bond, including a purpose-built line for low-volume/high-value product and Scotland’s fastest miniature bottling line.
Working with some of the world’s leading spirits brands, it has the capacity to produce two million cases per year, it can store three million litres in its vats and can accommodate up to 150,000 cases in its bonded warehouse.
Ewing said: “Our whisky industry is a national success story and makes a huge contribution to Scotland. Exports are a large part of this and it’s encouraging to see the latest figures showing that they are up 22% in the first half of the year to stand at £1.8 billion.
“BenRiach is to be congratulated for playing its part in this and developing its brands so well over the last few years – and contributing to Scotland’s sustainable economic growth in the process.”
Company shareholder and industry veteran Billy Walker, who accompanied the minster during his visit said: “I took the opportunity to emphasise that whisky is Scotland’s greatest export and vital to the Scottish Government’s number one priority – increasing sustainable economic growth.
“It plays a critical role in the Scottish economy, with producers employing over 10,000 workers, generating gross income of over £460m and contributing gross value added of £2.7 billion towards Scotland’s economy.”