The latest figures from HM Revenue and Customs show that British gin sales abroad, in 2019, were worth £672 million – up 9% on the previous year.
Total sales of gin at home and abroad are now worth over £3.2 billion, with the WSTA using the figures to mark one month until the 2020 Budget, as they urge the Chancellor to support British spiritmakers so that they can prosper both at home and abroad.
In 2016 export sales of the juniper-based spirit broke the half a billion-pound mark for the first time and since then the popularity of British gin has seen sales continue to soar.
Thanks to the growing interest in British gin, which has been dubbed the ‘ginaissance’, UK gin exports are worth more than double the sales in 2010, which reached just over £288 million.
Britain sends more gin around the world than it does beef, wheat or beer, with gin sales worth 14% more than sales of British beer overseas – sales of British beer totalling £590 million abroad in 2019.
The WSTA is calling on Government to support British gin exporters and encourage them to capitalise on the thirst for all things ‘Brand Britain’ in established and emerging markets.
WSTA Chief Executive, Miles Beale, said:
“We now have year-end figures for the UK’s trade in 2019, and, just as was the case at the end of 2018, gin has ended on a high. It was not long ago that sales of gin at home and abroad broke the £3 billion barrier and the category continues to go from strength to strength. If freezing duty supports this sort of growth, imagine what a cut could do?
“These numbers tell us three things – first, that neither Brits, nor those overseas, can get enough of British gin.
“Second, these numbers tell us something else important – 47% of our gin exports go to the EU. As British spiritmakers gear up to tackle new export markets, it will be important to maintain the booming trade in British gin – linking British supply and European demand, and vice-versa – through the transition period on 31st December 2020.
“Finally, British spiritmakers, many of whom are SMEs, need greater support from Government to continue to grow and to export sooner and further afield. That is why, as a first and easy step, we are calling on the Chancellor to cut duty by 2% at the Budget, which is exactly one month away on 11th March.”