BSI’s New Whisky Guidelines: What You Need To Know

Whisky’s popularity in India knows no bounds, as it overtook France in 2022 to become the largest Scotch whisky market, with a staggering 242 million cases consumed. According to the International Wines and Spirits Record (ISWR), whisky commands nearly two-thirds of India’s $53 billion alcoholic beverage sales, making it the drink of choice for many. Amidst this spirited competition, the British Standards Institution (BSI) has introduced new industry standards that promise a dependable and trustworthy whisky experience for producers and consumers alike.

Here Are Some Of BSI’s Whisky Guidelines:

1. Quality Comes First:

BSI’s guidelines prioritize quality above all else. Whether you prefer “whisky” or “whiskey,” these standards are designed to empower distillers to craft outstanding products that meet both local and global market demands. It’s not merely about compliance; it’s about achieving excellence.

2. Water or Caramel:

BSI offers further insights into the only two additives permitted in whisky – water and plain caramel. These guidelines not only outline production processes but also define key whisky types and the necessary analytical methods to maintain their authenticity.

3. Banishing Chill Haze:

Ever wondered about the natural “chill haze” that can occur when ice is added to whisky? BSI’s guidelines provide explanations, along with insights into calcium oxalate, geographical indications, and the effects of distillation on cereal proteins.

4. Proof in the Percentage:

These standards uphold traditional expectations of whisky drinkers worldwide. From cereal-based production to specific distillation methods, ageing in wooden casks for a minimum of three years, and maintaining a minimum strength of 40% alc. vol., these guidelines preserve the essence of the whisky’s colour, aroma, and taste.

5. Age and Beauty:

BSI’s guidelines define the desired colour spectrum of whisky, ranging from pale yellow/gold to deep amber/mahogany, ensuring a visually appealing experience. Additionally, they insist on a minimum three-year maturation period in wooden casks, guaranteeing unadulterated and additive-free whisky.

As India’s alcoholic beverages market continues its meteoric rise, whisky stands at the forefront, with local brands accounting for a staggering 96% of the market. With BSI’s new guidelines, the whisky industry is poised for even greater success. Amidst the millennial-driven surge in consumption and a growing middle class shifting their allegiance to whisky, these standards promise to maintain the journey of Indian whisky as smooth and flavorful as ever. Cheers to the future of Indian whisky!

Also Read: How To Pick The Right Scotch For Your Taste

About the author: Theuns Kotze, Managing Director at Assurance IMETA, is an industry expert with a passion for enhancing quality and standards in the world of beverages.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed within this article are the personal opinions of the author. NDTV is not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, suitability, or validity of any information on this article. All information is provided on an as-is basis. The information, facts or opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of NDTV and NDTV does not assume any responsibility or liability for the same.

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