Scotch Whisky gets trademark in £800m US market

The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) announced it has successfully registered “Scotch Whisky” as a certification trademark in the United States — the industry’s largest global market worth almost £800 million in 2021.

“The recognition of Scotch Whisky as a trademark strengthens the legal protection for Scotland’s national drink in the United States, which is already protected under the US Federal Code, will make enforcement against counterfeit products being sold or passed off as Scotch Whisky easier,” said the SWA.

“Scotch Whisky exports earned the UK £143 every second in 2021, totalling more than £4.5bn.

“Exports to the United States are still recovering following 18 months of tariffs on Single Malt Scotch Whisky, which were suspended in June last year.

“In 2021 exports increased by 8% to £790m, with 4 bottles of Scotch Whisky exported to the US every second.

“The legal protection of Scotch Whisky is vital to the industry’s export success. The United States is among more than one hundred other countries where ‘Scotch Whisky’ has been granted specific legal protection.”

SWA chief executive Mark Kent said: “The registration of the ‘Scotch Whisky’ certification trademark in the United States is a milestone for Scotland’s national drink in our largest global market.

“This registration offers Scotch Whisky a greater degree of legal protection and will allow us to take action against those who seek to cash-in on the heritage, craft and quality of genuine Scotch.

“Scotch Whisky – the UK’s largest food and drink export – is a firm favourite the US, which was the industry’s first billion pound market in 2019 before the impact of tariffs and the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The trademark registration is another sign of the industry’s determination to build back in the United States and ensure that consumers in a dynamic and competitive spirits market can be confident that the Scotch Whisky they purchase is the genuine article.”