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Facts & Figures

There are 43 bottles of Scotch Whisky exported every second to markets all over the world! Find out more about the amazing stats behind the industry.
  • 43 bottles (70cl @40% ABV) of Scotch Whisky are shipped from Scotland to over 160 markets around the world each second, totalling over 1.35bn every year
  • Laid end to end those bottles would stretch about 467,000kms -  that's more than 11 times around the Earth!
  • In 2023, Scotch Whisky exports were worth £5.6bn
  • In 2023, Scotch Whisky accounted for 74% of Scottish food and drink exports and 22% of all UK food and drink exports
  • In 2022, Scotch Whisky accounted for 26% of all Scotland’s international goods exports and 2% of all UK goods exports
  • The Scotch Whisky industry provides £7.1bn in gross value added (GVA) to the UK economy (2022)
  • More than 41,000 people are employed in the Scotch Whisky industry in Scotland and over 25,000 more jobs across the UK are supported by the industry
  • Around 90% of barley requirements of the industry are sourced in Scotland
  • In 2022, there were 2 million visits to Scotch Whisky distilleries, making Scotch Whisky visitor centres collectively the popular tourist attraction in Scotland
  • Some 22 million casks lie maturing in warehouses in Scotland waiting to be discovered - that is around 12bn 70cl bottles
  • To be called Scotch Whisky, the spirit must mature in oak casks in Scotland for at least 3 years
  • There are currently 151 operating Scotch Whisky distilleries across Scotland (May 2024)

All figures relate to Jan-Dec 2023 unless stated.

Scotch Whisky's Economic Impact

The SWA’s latest Economic Impact report demonstrates that Scotch Whisky’s contribution to the UK economy reached £7.1bn in 2022.

Our report takes figures from industry and government data to quantify the impact of Scotch Whisky to the UK and Scottish economies, from production to employment.

Our 2024 report shows that:

  • There has been a 29% increase in GVA since 2018 (our most recent industry impact report)
  • There are 24,000 more jobs supported across the UK than a decade ago
  • Productivity per employee is £273k
  • £3 in every £100 of Scotland's GVA is generated by Scotch Whisky
These figures highlight the importance of backing a key sector for productivity, exports and employment.

Mark Kent, Chief Executive, SWA

The Scotch Whisky Economic Impact report found that 75% of the total GVA of the Scotch Whisky industry is generated in Scotland, equal to £5.3bn annually – helped by legislation that requires all Scotch Whisky to be distilled and matured for at least three years in Scotland, and all Single Malt Scotch whisky to be bottled in Scotland.

Learn more about how Scotch is made

Learn more about how Scotch Whisky is legally protected.

news & commentary

15 February 2024

2023 Scotch Whisky Export Figures Published

The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) has released global export figures that show the value of Scotch exports topped £5.6bn in 2023. The equivalent of 1.35bn 70cl bottles of Scotch Whisky were exported last year, equating to 43 per second.

16 January 2024

Scotch Whisky boosts UK economy by £7.1bn

New Report shows value of Scotland’s national drink in driving economic growth

10 February 2023

Scotch Whisky exports grow to over £6bn

Post-pandemic restocking, the return of Global Travel Retail and premiumisation trends all contributed to growth in volume and value for Scotch Whisky in 2022.

12 February 2021

'Lost decade of growth' as tariffs and Covid hit Scotch Whisky exports hard

Scotch Whisky export figures for 2020 have now been released, with the industry experiencing a ‘lost decade of growth’ as tariffs and Covid hit exports hard.

11 February 2020

Scotch Whisky exports surge amidst backdrop of tariff uncertainty

Scotch Whisky exports grew by 4.4% to more than £4.9bn in 2019, with 1.3bn bottles exported to 180 markets.


16 January 2024

Scotch Whisky Economic Impact report

Learn more about Scotch Whisky's contribution to the UK and Scottish economies.