NEW DELHI: Global whiskey volumes are set to witness a rebound in 2021, after a 10.7% declined last year, helped by recovery in large markets such as India and the US, according to data released by market research firm IWSR.
Most of the growth for Scotch Whiskey will come from delayed recovery in the key market of India, IWSR said.
“Global whiskey experienced a 10.7% volume decline in 2020, but the category is forecasted to rebound in 2021 and continue on its growth path, bolstered by the US and India. Whiskies are among the fastest-growing sub-categories of spirits— Irish whiskey will be aided by the return of the on-trade and strength of new entrants; growth in Japanese whiskey and US whiskey will mainly come from both of their respective home markets. Most of the growth for Scotch whiskey will come from delayed recovery in the key market of India and eventual revival of global travel retail, especially for premium Scotch,” the researcher said in a report.
To be sure, IWSR tracks trends and provides data on the global alcoholic beverages market. India is large market for alcoholic beverages—especially whiskey—the largest selling alcoholic beverage in the country.
A lockdown in late March 2020 led to closure of most non-essential stores that dented consumption of alcoholic beverages in India.
However, some states allowed liquor stores to open up in May as the country moved towards gradual unlocking. Meanwhile, sale and consumption of liquor in restaurants and bars remained temporarily suspended as restrictions persisted.
Recent estimates by industry body Confederation of Indian Alcoholic Beverage Companies (CIABC) suggest that sale of Indian made foreign liquor (IMFL) dipped 12% in the last fiscal. After declining for most of the year, alcoholic beverages reported a 6% growth in the March quarter, the industry body said.
Meanwhile, IWSR said that global beverage alcohol is showing “positive signs of recovery”.
IWSR expects the industry to grow 2.9% in volumes by the end of 2021. Total beverage alcohol consumption could return to pre-covid levels by 2023, with consumption steadily increasing through to 2025, it added.
The pandemic also accelerated adoption of e-commerce in several large markets globally and also created more in-home drinking occasions. These trends are likely to continue.
“In many global markets, covid-19 accelerated the impact and growth of key industry drivers, such as the development of e-commerce, premiumisation, the rise of the ‘home premise,’ moderation, and the need for convenience in product formats,” says Mark Meek, CEO, IWSR said.