Bengaluru: Indian whiskies, including scotch, will be among the largest contributors of growth to the global whisky market over the next five years, according to the latest forecast by International Wine and Spirits Research (IWSR).

Whisky, gin and tequila along with Chinese rice wine or baijiu will contribute the most to growth of the total spirits market worldwide. The global spirits market is forecast to be at 3.19 billion cases by 2021, with whiskey, gin and tequila expected to make gains of 55.2 million, 7.1 million and 5.8 million 9 litre cases, respectively, between 2017 and 2021.

The growth in the whisky market will be propelled by consumption of both local and scotch whiskies in India, which is the largest growth market for that spirit category in the world. At a global level, scotch is expected to contribute 10.5 million cases to total whisky growth, while others (predominantly Indian) will grow 28.2 million cases, according to IWSR data.

Three Indian whiskies made it to IWSR’s 2016 global top 10 spirits brands by volume sales, published in July. Allied Blenders & Distillers Pvt. Ltd’s Officer’s Choice whisky was the second-most consumed spirit (32.32 million cases), while Diageo Plc-United Spirits Ltd’s McDowell’s ranked sixth (25.63 million cases) and Pernod Ricard SA’s Imperial Blue rounded it off at the 10th spot (18.01 million cases).

Beer and wine are expected to gain the most in terms of volumes in the overall alcohol market over the next five years, IWSR said in a statement on Tuesday, adding that the strongest growth for beer is expected to come from Mexico, India and Vietnam.

The total US alcohol market, the second-largest growth market globally for whisky and several other spirit categories, is nevertheless expected to decline by 37 million cases over the next five years, IWSR said. Growth in whisky, wine and tequila in the US will not be enough to offset declines in beer, cider and mixed drinks, the research firm added.

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