Calls for UK law to protect Scotch whisky post-Brexit
The Scottish Government has called for Scotch to be defined in UK law in order to protect whisky exports after Brexit.
Scotland’s Economy Secretary Keith Brown has written to UK ministers calling for protection of the Scotch whisky industry, in light of International Trade Secretary Liam Fox’s visit to the US this week.
The industry is worth around £4 billion to Scotland in exports and an EU definition of whisky currently protects sales from sub-standard products.
Mr Brown said: “Aside from being a key part of Scottish culture and identity, our whisky industry supports around 20,000 jobs.
“The US made clear in the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership discussions they would support a relaxation of the definition of whisky, which would open the market up to a number of products which do not currently meet that standard.
“It is vital that we continue to have robust legal protection of Scotch whisky, which is why I have sought clarification from the UK Government as to whether Scotch whisky featured in discussions during last week’s trade visit by the Trade Secretary.
“I am also demanding that the current EU regulations are guaranteed post-Brexit.
“We need to be sure that any future deals work for Scotland and are not threatening the livelihoods of our farmers and producers.”
The industry is worth around £4 billion to Scotland.