Artisan gin now worth £1billion as sales rise by 20% in a year

A new report shows that the number of distilleries in the UK has increased by a fifth in the last year amid a sudden popularity in artisan gin. Picture by Andrew Milligan/PA Wire
A new report shows that the number of distilleries in the UK has increased by a fifth in the last year amid a sudden popularity in artisan gin. Picture by Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

The number of distilleries in the UK has increased by a fifth in the last year amid a sudden popularity in artisan gin, a new report shows.

There are more than 130 distilleries, double the number in 2012, said accountancy group UHY Hacker Young.

The North East is home to a number of successful small-batch brands including Durham Gin and Poetic License in Sunderland.

The value of gin sales has increased significantly over recent years, exceeding £1billion in 2016 and is expected to rise to £1.37billion by 2020 as gin continues to undergo a "renaissance."

James Simmonds, of UHY Hacker Young, said: "Five years ago, artisan gin was a relatively unknown product, but now it's very common to see five or 10 different premium gins on the menu or on a supermarket shelf.

"Premium gins often retail at around £30 a bottle, making it a high-margin industry.

"Gin can be very versatile - with many companies adding new and unusual flavourings to their products.

"This means that new producers can differentiate themselves relatively easily in comparison to other spirit producers such as whisky.