New alliance will back 'authentic' Scottish whisky
"Authentic" Scottish whiskies are to be protected by a new trade alliance.
Scotland Food and Drink and the Scottish Craft Distillers Association (SCDA) have been brought together.
SCDA members will now become members of the government-backed body automatically. It has an objective of increasing the value of the food and drink industry by £30bn by 2030.
Craft distillers own and operate a still as well as manufacturing and bottling in Scotland.
They say the rules are in place to "protect Scottish craft distillers" from those who "use Scotland's provenance and heritage" to sell their products but are manufacturing elsewhere.
As well as whisky, Scottish-produced gin is said to be enjoying a revival.
SCDA chairman Prof Alan Wolstenholme said: "On behalf of the SCDA's committee, I am delighted to have joined forces with Scotland Food and Drink.
"This alliance will allow us to continue the work that the SCDA has started on protecting the Scottish brand for distillers across the country.
"Ultimately, we are run by our members for our members and with the support of the Scotland Food and Drink team, we are working on a plan to maximise opportunities for the sector."
Rachel Athey, the director of Scotland Food and Drink, said: "The Scottish food and drink sector is thriving and due to this success, more and more businesses are capitalising on Scotland's brand.
"The public show no signs of growing tired of spirits, in particular gin, so it is important that we protect the producers who work hard to produce an authentic product.
"Our new alliance with the SCDA means that members now automatically become members of Scotland Food & Drink.
"This gives distillers access to Scotland Food and Drink's experts with the additional benefit of specific sector insight, activity and priorities."