Friday, September 13, 2013
Suntory To Ramp Up Whiskey Output On Strong Demand
TOKYO (Nikkei)--Suntory Liquors Ltd. will increase production capacity for whiskey at its Yamazaki Distillery by 40% in response to robust demand at home and abroad.
The company opened its main distillery to the press on Friday to display four new copper pot stills that will be used to heat whiskey ingredients to bump up the alcohol concentration. Once the stills go into operation next month, there will be 16 active stills at the Osaka Prefecture distillery.
Yamazaki Distillery is the oldest whiskey production facility in Japan, having launched in 1924. It turns out an unblended variety for its namesake product, as well as such whiskeys as Hibiki.
The company spent about 1 billion yen to add equipment at the facility for the first time in 45 years. It plans to invest roughly 4 billion yen as early as next summer to build a storage facility for aging whiskey that can hold some 150,000 casks.
Domestic demand for whiskey has been growing since 2009 thanks to the popularity of highballs.
(The Nikkei, Sept. 14 morning edition)