Whisky distilleries could once again return to Dunedin after
a 15 year absence, if a trade mission to Canada and the
United Kingdom is successful this week.
Representatives from the New Zealand Whisky Collection
yesterday left for a series of promotional events and trade
presentations in Montreal, Toronto, Ottawa, London and
Aberdeen, and collection spokesman Greg Ramsay said the early
signs were already good that the Oamaru-based collection of
whiskies would be well-received.
Mr Ramsay said almost 60% of stock sent last year to the UK's
largest whisky distributor, Scottish company Gordon and
MacPhail, was pre-sold before it reached liquor shop shelves.
Production at the Willowbank distillery in Dunedin ceased in
1997, but for the past six years its whisky has been maturing
at the New Zealand Whisky Collection in Oamaru and Mr Ramsay
said it received ''wide acclaim'' overseas.
If exports continued to go well, Dunedin would be distilling
whisky again ''in no time''.