Craft beer boom helps Scottish brewery sector double since 2010

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Startups like BrewDog have kicked the industry into growth (Source: Getty)

Startups have helped the Scottish brewery sector to double in size since 2010, new figures from the Scottish Parliament's information centre reveal.

In 2016 there were 115 breweries up and running in the country, compared to 55 just six years earlier.

The SNP put the growth down to the popularity and high survival rate of startup breweries, including the fast-growing BrewDog which has its headquarters just outside of Aberdeen.

Whisky, which is one of Scotland's biggest exports alongside salmon, has also grown. The number of distilleries increased from 145 to 190 in the same period.

The figures also showed that the brewery industry is providing more jobs for the communities in Scottish towns and cities where operations are based. In 2016, 950 workers were employed in Scotland’s breweries – a 64 per cent increase since 2011.

Read more: Brewdog is planning an IPO in the next 5 years

Kate Forbes, MSP for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch, said that the SNP government had been striving to help the burgeoning brewery sector.

“This growth environment has been fostered by an ambitious SNP Scottish Government working closely with public bodies and industry to support jobs, infrastructure and the economy, including via the £500m Scottish Growth Fund," she said

“Scotland’s breweries are providing a wealth of job opportunities in my constituency, with three distilleries and a brewery on Skye alone, and increasing our offering of home grown products for the rising tourist numbers."

But some Scottish whisky producers took the government to the supreme court last month over proposals for minimum unit pricing on alcohol.