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New £6.7m whisky distillery planned for Glenrothes

Plans have been unveiled for a new £6.7 million malt whisky distillery and warehouse in Glenrothes, Fife, which will produce liquid solely for India, Africa and the Far East.

Dram of Scotch whisky
The new Glenrothes whisky distillery will begin producing liquid in 2015

The new distillery is part of a joint venture between Indian drinks group Kyndal – formerly owned by Whyte & Mackay – and Perthshire distiller John Fife & Co.

Due to become operational in 2015, the as-yet-unnamed distillery is expected to  generate £3.6m worth of exports for the Scottish economy “over the next three years”.

The project has been part-funded by Scottish Enterprise, which has granted £1.58m to John Fergus & Co to build the microdistillery and bonded warehouse.

Rooma Bussi, India country manager of Scottish Enterprise’s international arm Scottish Development International, said: “This is an exciting project which demonstrates the growing opportunities for business and collaboration between Scotland and India.

“The Scottish whisky industry has seen major growth in recent years and now contributes over £4 billion annually to our economy.”

Emerging middle classes across India, Africa and Asia are trading up from local spirits to aspirational international brands, with Scotch at the forefront of the trend.

“There is a rapidly increasing interest amongst consumers in Asia for Scotch whisky, which is leading to new opportunities for smaller distilleries and I’m confident this will be the same for Kyndal and John Fergus & Co in Fife as they look to grow their operations both in Scotland and overseas,” Bussi added.

The India-Scotland collaboration follows Diageo’s majority buyout of India’s United Spirits earlier this year, which gives the drinks giant a clearer route to market for its own Scotch brands.

Both deals come as talks continue between India and the European Union on a free trade deal, which could lead to a cut in the 150% duty rate for Scotch imports.

Kyndal was founded in 2002 as a wholly owned subsidiary of Whyte & Mackay, but was sold in a management buyout in 2006 when the Scotch producer was sold to India’s United Beverage Group.

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