Over recent years one of the strongest growth trends in the whisky market has been expansion of demand for premium, high-end and super-premium whiskies around the world, especially in mature markets such as the UK and US and in high-growth markets such as China.
Demand from Asia has revolutionized the whisky business, with 54% of total whisky sales now generated by the Asia and Pacific zone, according to data from Technavio.
Premium brands are gaining market share across all markets, driven in particular by Irish whiskey and single malt Scotch whisky brands.
For example in the US, blended Scotch whiskies have shrunk by about 1.6 million cases since 2000, while sales of single malt scotch whisky have mushroomed - recording 7% growth in 2015, and almost tripling sales since 2000, according to data from Impact Databank.
High-end premium Irish whiskies have increased sales by 589% since 2002, according to DISCUS, while the super-premium Irish whiskey segment has expanded 3,054% in the same period.
Consumers are consistently trading up to more premium whiskies, which use greater personalization of their packaging to distinguish their offer.
Leading brands have segmented their offer into different declinations, with high-end and super-premium declinations recording the highest growth.
Cork is the preferred stopper for the spectrum from premium through to super-premium whiskies, in light of cork’s premium image and unique sealing characteristics. Cork stoppers have consolidated their market share in this segment over recent years.
In the case of single malt Scotch whiskies, leading premium whisky brands - such as The Glenlivet, The Macallan, Glenfiddich, Glenmorangie, The Balvenie and Laphroaig – consistently use cork capsulated stoppers.
This trend has been further powered by the increasing number of craft distilleries, the vast majority of which use cork stoppers.
The numbers speak for themselves - while there were 109 independent distilleries operating in the U.S. in 2010, there are more than 700 in operation today.
Amorim TopSeries has been able to capitalize on this premiumisation trend in the whisky trade, given its in-depth knowledge of its clients’ requirements, local presence in key markets, use of more noble, ecologically-friendly materials, and its one-stop-shop approach that ensures that the stoppers’ design is tailored to the clients’ overall packaging objectives.
Given that attractive and sophisticated packaging is essential to building the market share of high-end whiskies Amorim TopSeries foresees significant further growth of its provision of stoppers to this segment, including the development of increasingly innovative solutions in order to satisfy customer demands.
Pictures supplied by courtesy of Paragraph