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Audio Visual Project

Scottish culture and society Clmence Vauthier (40131973) Raphalle Savard-Moisan (40131273)

Scotch Whisky

History of Scotch Whisky

The history of Scotland and whisky goes back to the Ancient Egypt, when the first distillation begins. Since then, whisky has been a form of medecine before being the casual drink they now serve in every bar of Scotland. More than a national pride, whisky brings a lot of questions and infatuation since many decades in the country (Scotland whisky, 2013). Fights between England and Scotland about whisky dates back to the 18th century, when an important taxation on the production of Scotch whisky by England required more than thousands of producers to hide to produce the popular drink. Later, after the whisky rebellion, England introduced a law authorizing the legal production of whisky, which brought new technical innovations (Scotland whisky, 2013).

Economic impact of whisky

The economic impact that the industry of whisky has on Scotland raises a lot of debates. In fact, Value added from Scotch whisky is reported as around 3 billion about 2.5% of Scottish GDP but this figure reflects essentially arbitrary transfer prices and export valuations (Donald, 2012). A lot of questions can be asked when it comes to the economic impact of whisky in Scotland :

Is this industry really profitable for Scotland ? Who is making money with the whisky and the distilleries of Scotland ?

Whisky and Scotlands employment

In Scotland, 35,000 people are working in a job supported by the Scotch whisky industry and 10,000 of these jobs are directly linked to the industry. In fact, 27% of the jobs in the industry is for blending and botteling the product, and 20% represent office jobs (Scotch whisky association, 2012). But some questions can be asked concerning the impact of Scotch whisky on Scotlands employment as recorded jobs in the industry actually decreased in 2010, by 6% (Donald, 2012).

The industry of whisky in an independent Scotland

Whisky is one of the topic directly related to the independence of Scotland. According to the Prime Minister Alex Salmond, the North Sea oil, the energy resources and other industries like the Scotch whisky could make Scotland the OECDS sixt wealthiest nation, far beyond the rest of the UK which would be in 15th place (Carrell, 2012). But a recent movement, The Better Together campaign, as well as other groups claims that the best for the Scottish businesses and economy is to be a part of the UK.

Scotch whisky and social problems

Alcohol including whisky in Scotland is more and more problematic over the years and has a huge impact on health, crime, social care and productive capacity (Young, 2012). In fact, since over 12 years, the alcohol sold in Scotland exceeds the weekly recommendations limit for men (The Scottish Government, 2013). The real problem, according to Alcohol Focus Scotland, stay the cheap and strong alcohol, which is drink in excess (2013).

Whisky, alcohol and the minimum pricing law of Scotland

Like mentionned in the last slide, the comsuption of alcohol including whisky can have negative impact on Scotland, especially on a social perspective. Aware of that situation, the Scottish governement attempted the minimum pricing law in 2012 to reduce crime and improve the health of the nation. Since then, The Scottish Whisky Association claims that the law is illegal, probably aware of the fact that a minimum pricing on alcohol could damage the industry (2013).

Distilleries and the production of whisky

In 2009, the Herald Scotland newspapers identified 105 distilleries in Scotland, and half of them did not belong to Scotland but to overseas firm (Hearld Scotland, 2009). In Scotlands distilleries, they produce from water, cereals and yeast the whisky that is exported everywhere in the world. The process to produce whisky is too complicated to be explain here, but most of the distilleries of Scotland welcome visitors that wants to know how the whisky is made, like the one we visited in the Isle of Skye on the picture above, the Talisker distillery. In 2007, 1,233,696 tourists enjoyed the typical experience of visiting a distillery in Scotland, which means that this is a profitable tourist attraction (Herald Scotland, 2012).

Scotch whisky all over the world

As mentioned before, Scotch whisky exportation is one of the important sector of Scotlands economy. USA, France and Singapore are the main countries where Scotland exports scotch whisky, and the demand increase year after year (BBC, 2013). In fact, Scotch whisky is now exported to around 200 countries, with the top 20 export destinations accounting for 1.54 billion in value sales in the first-half (BBC, 2013). But what happens to the exportation in Europe with the recession that affects several countries right now ?

Interview with someone from the industry

Images references
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History of Scotch whisky Photograph taken by us, at the Edinburghs Castle.

Economic impact of whisky Photograph taken by us, in a pub on High Street, Edinburgh. Whisky and Scotland employment Photograph taken by us in a shop on Princess Street, Edinburgh. The industry of whisky in an independent Scotland Photograph taken by us, on North Bridge, The Carlton Hotels flags, Edinburgh. Scotch whisky and social problems Photograph taken by us, the crowd on Princess Street. Whisky, alcohol and the minimum pricing law of Scotland - Photograph taken by us, at the Scottish Parliement.

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Distilleries and the production of whisky Photograph taken by us, at the Talisker Distillery, Isle of Skye.
Scotch whisky all over the world Photograph taken by us, Wolrd Bottle of whisky, in a shop on Princess Street, Edinburgh. Interview Photograph taken by us, at Whisky Rooms, North Bank Street, Edinburgh. Conclusion

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