Brexit 'Could Cause A Gin Shortage In UK'
Gin lovers, you'd better sit down.
We hate to be the bearers of bad news, but it seems that our beloved beverage, the humble gin and tonic, is under threat.
The Wine and Spirits Trade Association (WSTA) has warned the UK of a serious gin drought if the dreaded 'no-deal' Brexit scenario becomes a reality.
The scenario, which predicts severe shortages in food and medicine within just two weeks of leaving the European Union, would have a massive impact on the amount of juniper berries British distillers are supplied with.
There are currently over 300 gin distilleries in the UK, many of which heavily rely on imported juniper berries from the Mediterranean.
Dan Szor, founder of the Cotswold Distillery in Stourton, told the Evening Standard: "Without juniper there is no gin. Juniper grows wild and the success of the harvest is very much weather dependent.
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"If we have a bad season and distillers are being forced to stockpile, I can see a juniper war kicking off."
And it's not just juniper either. Many of your other favourite botanicals such as orange peel, liquorice and angelica root are too under threat.
It's just all too much to take in - what cruel world are we living in here?
Chief Executive of the WSTA said a no-deal Brexit reality could have a 'catastrophic' impact, especially for smaller, independent distilleries and could lead to a 'shortage or even wipe out of your favourite gin'.
He told the paper: "The British gin industry is a great example of a booming trade that could be severely hampered if the so-called 'Brexit Armageddon' scenario strikes."
With more than 55 million bottles of gin sold last year, according to the WSTA's latest market report, the possibility of a shortage will affect booze cabinets everywhere. Anybody fancy a... tonic?
Hmm. Is it too early to start stockpiling the Tanqueray?