Americans and expat Brits raise a toast to the Queen as exports of UK gin, beer and wine to USA increase.
Americans and homesick Brits can toast the Queen’s 90th birthday with a quintessentially British gin and tonic or a pint of Yorkshire ale as US exports of our favourite beverages reached a record £361 million last year, Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss said at an event in Chicago.
More than 220 million pints of ale, including from Yorkshire’s Ilkley Brewery and Aberdeenshire’s Brew Dog, were shipped to the States in 2015 worth a record £164 million. This is up 35% since last year.
Enough gin to pour 580 million gin and tonics was enjoyed in the US last year as exports rose 9% to a record £159 million – in part thanks to a UK revival led by fashionable artisanal producers like Sipsmith and Hoxton.
And sales of English sparkling wine—which is now rivalling the very best French champagne—have helped boost overall wine exports to the US by 23%.
During a special event to mark the Queen’s 90th birthday, and champion British drink, the Environment Secretary toasted the industry for their hard work breaking into the lucrative American market, bringing jobs and investment back to the UK.
Speaking during the event, Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss said:
“Business is booming for our iconic drink brand in the States. From our world class gins to beloved ales, it’s fantastic to see brands so synonymous with British culture becoming the drinks of choice in bars, clubs and restaurants across the US.
We already export nearly £2 billion of food and drink here every year – but we can do a whole lot better. I want to give our food and drink entrepreneurs every opportunity to drive up these figures, delivering jobs and prosperity back home. Through remaining in a reformed EU we have a much greater chance of making this a reality.”