Whisky maker drinks to grabbing bigger slice of lucrative low-alcohol market

Whyte & Mackay is set to launch a lighter spirit drink to cash in on a growing trend of low alcohol products.

Published 28th May 2019
Updated 21 st Sep 2023

Whyte & Mackay Light is a premium spirit drink made in Scotland. It has been expertly crafted to 21.5 per cent, a lower ABV (alcohol by volume) which reflects the consumer trend for low or no-alcohol products.

The lighter spirit is a smooth, rich drink, created to be served straight or as a long drink with a mixer. It will be available from Tesco stores nationwide from early June, with a recommended sale price of £12, and there are plans for a further roll-out in the autumn.

Ruairi Perry, Head of Brand, said: “The success we enjoy across the Whyte & Mackay portfolio has been built on the brand that carries our name. We’re delighted to announce the launch of Whyte & Mackay Light.

"It’s a different product with the younger consumer in mind. It leads the way in the spirits category as a quality spirit drink, available at a lower ABV, expertly crafted to be surprisingly smooth, whether it is enjoyed neat or as a long-serve.”

Rod Gillies, Head of Innovation at Whyte & Mackay, said: “We’ve doubled the size of our brand portfolio in the last three years, with new whiskies developed to bring new consumers into the category.

“Now, with Whyte & Mackay Light, we’re using the strength of one of our existing brands to deliver an attractive option for the growing number of consumers who may be looking to keep an eye on their alcohol intake.

"People trust Whyte & Mackay to make a great-tasting spirit and, thanks to our expert distilling team, Whyte & Mackay Light tastes fantastic.

“We think it’s a compelling addition to the spirit drink category, and we’re looking forward to introducing consumers and shoppers to it.”

The product stands apart within Whyte & Mackay’s portfolio and comes as the Glasgow-based spirits producers celebrate their 175-year anniversary.

The low and no-alcohol trend sees no signs of slowing down, with drinks distributor Cellar Trends, launching a low-ABV wine – Cosmopolitan Diva – to the Scottish on-trade late last year.

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This follows on from the growing number of low or no-alcohol beers available, which include BrewDog’s Punk AF, and the successful investment in Seedlip non-alcoholic spirits by distiller Diageo.

Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne, whisky and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind is the Food and Drink Editor and whisky writer for The Scotsman, as well as hosting Scran, The Scotsman's food and drink podcast.
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