THE boss of Chivas Brothers is the new chairman of the Scotch Whisky Association.

Jean-Etienne Gourgues, who has led Dumbarton-based Chivas since July 2021, has been appointed to the post at the distillers' body for a two-year term.

He declared it was “vital” that the industry unites to meet its “common challenges”.

Mr Gourgues said: "The Scotch Whisky Association has been instrumental in transforming Scotch into a global success. Now more than ever, it’s vital that we work together as an industry to meet common challenges, recognising that we can achieve more through collaboration than we can by standing alone. I look forward to working with my fellow council members to secure a bright future for Scotch, taking forward all we’ve learned the past 200 years to pave a sustainable, responsible path ahead."

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The chairman of the SWA heads the association’s council, which comprises 16 representatives from member companies. It meets four times a year to support and advise on the Scotch whisky industry’s strategic priorities on behalf of its members. Mr Gourgues succeeds Diageo as council chairman and is the association’s 23rd chairman in its 112-year history.

Mark Kent, chief executive of the SWA, said: “We are pleased to welcome Jean-Etienne as council chair during a crucial time for the Scotch Whisky industry.

“The sustainability of our sector – whether that’s working to meet net-zero ambitions, ensuring the long-term market share of Scotch in global markets, or building skills in our current and upcoming workforce – is of huge importance for Scotch whisky producers of all sizes. Jean-Etienne’s guidance and focus in this key area will be of great value to our sector as we navigate the coming years, and the SWA and its council look forward to working with him and the wider industry to drive those priorities.”

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