Asia driving global malt whisky growth

By RJ Whitehead

- Last updated on GMT

Asia driving global malt whisky growth

Related tags Compound annual growth rate

Strong growth in Asia has driven the world’s malt whisky sector, which grew by 46.7% between 2003 and 2012, according to a new report from just-drinks and The IWSR.

With the overall industry hitting a record high in 2012 of 7.8m cases, the study predicts that Asia will continue to see a "very dynamic" compound annual growth rate of 20.2%, and reach around 1.5m cases in 2012. 

Taiwan on a high

While most of this growth came from Taiwan, the report found that most countries in Asia are experiencing "healthy growth". Taiwan overtook France in 2012 to become the second-largest market for malt.

Another key driver for the malt sector has been the travel retail market, which has grown its share of the category from 12% in 2003 to 15% in 2012. This market’s sales in value terms reached US$447.7m in 2012.

Growth has also been strong in the Americas. North America has registered a "very healthy" 6.3% CAGR over the last 10 years, according to the report. In 2012, the country was the largest malt market in the world at 1.4m cases, representing a rise of almost 12% from 2011.

US still strong

The US is also the largest individual market in retail value terms (including excise duties), with a 15.5% share in 2012. The US malt category’s retail value sales climbed from US$272.5m in 2003 to just under US$613m in 2012.

Overall, the global malt market expanded at a CAGR of 7% between 2007 and 2012 in retail value terms, including excise taxes and duties, to reach US$3.95bn.

Europe is the largest region by retail value with a 38% share, followed by Asia-Pacific at 22%, the Americas at 21% and travel retail at 11.3%.

However, Europe’s share of the global market has fallen from almost 60% in 2003. Most of this decline can be attributed to softening sales in Southern Europe as a result of the economic crisis.

Italy, Spain and Greece have all seen sharp declines, the report stated.

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