Japan Whiskey Shortage: What Suntory Lovers Should Know

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Japan is dealing with a shortage of whiskey that its bad news for lovers of Suntory's aged offerings.

Japan Whiskey Shortage: What Suntory Lovers Should Know Source: Shutterstock

Here's what you need to know about the whiskey shortage in Japan.

  • The shortage is due to the whiskey market slowing in the 80's and producers not setting back as much of the drink for aging.
  • As a result, several different blends of aged whiskey are no longer available outside of the secondhand market.
  • The newest aged whiskey to suffer from this is Suntory's Hibiki 17.
  • The company says that it is discontinuing the blend as it doesn't have enough that will be ready in time for customers.
  • This will happen over time as the aged whiskey is slowly phased out of production and starts disappearing from store shelves.
  • This leaves the company with only one single core blend of aged whiskey: Hibiki 21.
  • Despite these troubles, Suntory has been investing in producing more aged whiskey.
  • It started this process back in 2013 with a $182 million investment.
  • There are also rumors claiming that aged whiskey will start returning to stock after the 2020 Olympics.
  • Whiskey companies in Japan are also pushing more non-aged whiskey with new brands to draw in customers.

"It will take quite a long time before we can restart sales of the products," a spokesperson for Suntory told Nikkei Asian Review . "We will give top priority to quality, and market the products by emphasizing quality over quantity."

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As of this writing, William White did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.

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