Today marks International Women's Day and we have a very special story from Diageo to mark the occasion as well as a round up of the rest of the whisky news this week!
Diageo Premiere Short Film Highlighting Lack Of Gender Equality In Advertising
Diageo have put the spotlight on the lack of gender equality in advertising, specifically the lack of inclusion and diversity by addressing the role of advertising in shaping culture, the historic misrepresentation of women and what we can do as a society to support more progressive gender portrayal in content and advertising.
Diageo CMO Syl Saller says “We strongly believe that diverse teams create all kinds of different stories, stories which portray men and women as they really are, stories that are eminently relatable.”
Take a look at the short film below:
Rare Whisky Tops Luxury Investment Index
Rare risky has risen in value by 40% in 2018 and now tops the Knight Frank Luxury Investment Index (KFLII).
This is the first time whisky has featured in the 100 index and it has taken the top spot as its first entry.
Andrew Shirley, editor of The Wealth Report (who published this news) and the Knight Frank Luxury Investment Index says “The stunning price growth of rare single malt whiskies shows that the appetite for new “alternative” asset classes remains strong among high-net-worth investors. However, we are seeing growth soften for some of the other asset classes in KFLII like classic cars that had been performing exceptionally strongly. This is partly down to a slowdown in activity by speculative investors and a return to a genuine collector-driven market. Despite this, the best examples in each asset class are still setting records when they come up for sale.”
The findings were published in The Wealth Report 2019 with the Knight Frank Rare Whisky 100 Index (KFRW100) being compiled by Rare Whisky 101 and containing 100 bottles of the world’s most desirable rare Scotch whisky and tracks UK auction prices. At the top of this index is the 1926 Macallan bottle with a hand-painted Michael Dillon design that broke the world record for most-expensive bottle at auction last year, fetching £1.2 million (US$1.5m).
Strong Global Demand For American Whiskey Drive Third Quarter Sales For Brown-Forman
Brown-Forman report a net sales increase of 3% to US$904 million in its third quarter with American Whiskey and Bourbon brands in their portfolio being a main driver in growth.
Old Forester and Woodford Reserve both seen double digit growth, Woodford Reserve growing by 24%, with the international expansion of the Jack Daniel’s trademark also performing well. Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel and Gentleman Jack reportedly also delivered a growth of 24%.
Bunnahabhain Three Year Refurbishment Begins
The Bunnahabhain Distillery of Islay is undergoing a face-lift on the exterior as well as an extensive upgrade inside.
The three year plan will see a total of £10.5 million invested with several of the original buildings carefully restored to give a new lease of life. Some of the current buildings will be removed or relocated to create more space and to ultimately provide the best experience possible to visitors.
Great care has been take in the planning stages so that the new developments have as little disruption as possible on whisky production and visitor experience.
The focal point of this will be the brand new visitor center featuring a café and retail space and will be positioned along the shoreline with stunning views overlooking Bunnahabhain Bay and the Sound of Islay. Due to the importance of this building it will be one of the first new buildings to be completed due to be open in time for the beginning of the 2020 season.
Scotch whisky breakthrough as Diageo recruits the first female coopering apprentices
Ahead of International Women’s Day Diageo has recruited its first female coopering apprentices.
First-year coopering apprentices Angela Cochrane and Kirsty Olychick – recruited by leading Scotch distiller Diageo at its Cambus Cooperage in Clackmannanshire - are breaking down the gender barriers and blazing a pioneering trail in the once male dominated trade.
The news marked the start of Scottish Apprenticeship Week, with Diageo celebrating having women employed in every part of its business in Scotland, from senior management roles, to distillery managers, master blenders, electrical and mechanical engineers, and in the traditional crafts of coppersmith and coopering.
Angela and Kirsty are part of team of 16 coopering apprentices in the Coopering School at Diageo Cambus, learning the tried and tested skills that have been used for centuries to make the oak casks for the maturation of Scotch whisky. The physically demanding four-year apprenticeship, which integrates theory with hands on experience, will allow the apprentices to master the traditional hand-craft skills of the cooper.
Angela Cochrane says “I’ve never been put off by gender stereotypes. I don’t think that should stop anyone from doing what they want to do. And knowing you’re contributing to the growing whisky industry is an amazing feeling.”
Kirsty Olychick, 38, left her home in Canada to pursue a career in the Scotch whisky industry. She says “I’ve always been inspired by the Scotch industry, so it is something I’ve always wanted to be involved in but living in Canada I hadn’t ever been exposed to the coopering craft… Coming into a male-dominated workplace didn’t put me off at all, in fact I found it really empowering to be one of the first women to take up the craft and make my mark in history. It’s such an exciting prospect to think that I’ll be contributing to the next generation of Scotch. You shouldn’t let anything hold you back.”
Ewan Andrew, Director of Diageo International Supply Centre, said the recruitment reflected the efforts across the company to enhance inclusion and diversity across all areas of its operations in Scotland.
He said: “We’re delighted to have recruited Angela and Kirsty and celebrate the landmark of having our first women in the coopering trade. But this is just the start of the journey. Across every part of our business we want to go further and faster in making diversity and inclusion a reality.”