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Food & Beverage

Suntory pours it on in India, the world's top whiskey market

Japanese distiller chases Diageo, aiming to sell more than 1m cases by 2022

Suntory hopes the strong brand image of Japanese spirits will translate to big sales for its new, locally blended Oaksmith brand to be offered exclusively in the Indian market.   © AFP/Jiji

TOKYO/MUMBAI -- Japanese beverage maker Suntory Holdings will roll out a whisky brand this week that will sell exclusively in India, the world's largest market, as it tries to gain ground on top distiller Diageo.

The new brand, Oaksmith, will be blended mixed with imported bourbon and scotch. The product is classified as an Indian-made foreign liquor that uses imported whisky and is blended in the country. Such products make up more than 90% of India's whiskey market.

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