UK govt whisky ad infuriates Scottish MPs

22nd January, 2019 by Owen Bellwood

A billboard in Canada has caused outrage among Scottish MPs after promoting British whisky without mentioning Scotland.

The ‘Heritage is Great’ advert is part of the UK government’s Great Britain campaign

The advert in Ottawa, part of the UK government’s Great Britain campaign, features an image of Northern Irish whiskey brand The Quiet Man alongside the strapline “heritage is great”.

The advert has caused a stir among Scottish National Party (SNP) MPs who have taken to Twitter to call out the advert for not mentioning Scotch whisky.

In a tweet, Douglas Chapman, SNP MP for Dunfermline & West Fife, said: “Scottish taxpayers’ money promotes ‘British’ whiskey. I’ve made the point directly to Liam Fox (time and time again) that if you promote Scotland the brand everyone wins. They think by undermining Scotland it saves their ‘precious’ Union.”

The advert also said: “The UK is home to 315 distilleries and produces some of the world’s most sought-after spirits, including world-famous whiskies refined over hundreds of years.”

Disgruntled MPs and whisky fans have taken offence to the absent mention of Scottish distilleries, and have suggested that the government’s support of Scotch whisky could benefit the whole of the UK.

MP for Central Ayrshire, Dr Philippa Whitford, tweeted: “This is a Northern Ireland whiskey and at least NI gets a mention, but no mention of where the other 300 or so are!”

According to the latest figures from the WSTA, there are 149 distilleries in Scotland, 135 in England, 17 in Wales and 14 in Northern Ireland.

Many users on the social media platform have been quick to criticise the MPs, with one tweeting: “As far as I am aware Scotland is in Britain? What is your problem?”

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