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Scotch Whisky Association partners with Scottish Craft Distillers Association

Published 10 February 2017

The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) has signed a collaboration agreement with the craft spirits body the Scottish Craft Distillers Association (SCDA).

The trade bodies have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to work in partnership to support the continued success of the entire Scotch whisky industry and its supply chain.

According to SWA, Scotch Whisky adds significantly to the Scottish and UK economies, contributing over £5bn in value each year, while supporting more than 40,000 jobs and exporting about £4bn of Scotch annually to about 200 markets worldwide.

As per the partnership, the two associations will support each other in building long-term and global reputation of Scotch Whisky through high quality products, while remaining as distinct organisations with their own memberships.

The partnership allows well established whisky companies to share their experience of brand building with new companies. New entrants in the market can also open up overseas market.

Apart from this, it is expected that the new entrants can offer fresh approaches and ideas to drive the industry.

SWA acting CEO Julie Hesketh-Laird said: "We are seeing unprecedented investment in the Scotch Whisky industry by companies of all sizes. This is a clear sign of optimism in the future, and recognition of the global demand for a high-quality product. 

"The SWA has over a century's wealth of experience and expertise - for example in market access, legal protection, and promoting social responsibility - that we are looking to share more widely with new entrants to the industry. 

“Our collaboration with the SCDA reflects the strong partnership that has developed between new and established distillers."  

SCDA chairman Alan Wolstenholme said: "Both long-established Scotch Whisky producers and the new wave of smaller distilleries recognise the enormous value and importance of the high regard our national product is held in around the world.

"This agreement demonstrates both organisations' determination to work co-operatively together to protect and enhance Scotch Whisky's reputation now and in the future.

"The SCDA warmly welcomes the genuine support and encouragement it has received not only from everyone across the industry, and in particular from the SWA, but also from the Scottish Government and its agencies especially Scottish Enterprise, Scottish Development International and the Scottish Agricultural Organisation Society."

Image: Cabinet Secretary for the Rural Economy and Connectivity, Fergus Ewing; SWA head of communications, Rosemary Gallagher; SCDA chairman, Alan Wolstenholme. Photo: Courtesy of The Scotch Whisky Association.