Thirst for the liquor is booming around the world -- from the U.S. to developing countries like China -- pushing prices of older vintages through the roof, attracting savvy investors hoping to cash in and forcing distilleries to scramble to meet demand.
"The shortage of old and rare single malt ... has already started, and it's going to get worse," said Rickesh Kishnani, who launched the world's first whisky investment fund.
The problem is that age-labeled single malt Scotch has always been, by design, a limited commodity. Distillers produce a set amount in a given year with pretty much zero visibility about what demand will be like when the bottles start hitting venerable ages.
The industry woke up to the current boom too late. In the late 1980s, many distilleries were going out of business, and just a decade ago, Scotch exports were stagnating.
More capacity is being added now, but the bad news for whisky drinkers is the shortage could last another 10 to 15 years, experts say.
For the record, I am a Bourbon drinker. Always have been (when I'm not drinking beer)--since, well, I'll keep that to myself in case my kids are reading.
And I like to keep it simple: Jim Beam and Jack Daniels do just fine. Especially when mixed with ginger ale or Coke. Sure I will drink the niche-stuff (small batch) if someone else is buying--Knob Creek is yummy.
And yes, I know Jack Daniels is technically a Tennessee whiskey and not Bourbon, but that difference is the same as the difference between 'soda' and 'pop.' Same product, different name.
Professors David Just and Brian Wansink of Cornell's Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management, re-examined national data from 2007 to 2008 describing people's food habits based on their body mass index (BMI).
They discovered, that for all but the most overweight and underweight individuals, the consumption of soda, candy and fast food showed no link to BMI.
I've been interested in the correlation between food prices and obesity rates for a while (for example, see here). Now Cornell 'scientists' Just and Wansink (economists) seem to be supporting a contention I have made for a while: obesity rates are higher when calories are cheaper (demand slopes downward). So I am now in the process of writing the economists' guide to lower BMI. The book will be relatively short--2 pages. Page 1 will include a summary of all of the scientific data to date on the relationship between obesity and caloric intake: "EAT LESS." Page 2 will include all of the evidence on the relationship between obesity and physical activity: "EXERCISE MORE."
The world may be getting warmer, but it is not getting much wetter. It quaffed 249 billion litres of alcoholic drinks in 2014, a modest increase of 1 billion over the preceding year. When measured by intake per head of the drinking-age population, consumption is down a little from a peak of 56.6 litres in 2012 to 55.4 litres in 2014. People in rich countries are the ones imbibing less—a moderation that has not (yet) been matched by a corresponding binge in emerging markets. India, for instance, is the ninth-largest alcohol market, yet consumption per head is low. Small wonder that drinks companies see an enormous market waiting to be tapped.
You can tell that I'm ramping up to teach principles of micro--I'm using env-econ to store examples, even if they have nothing to do with the environment. So here's a nice graph of ground beef prices over time. Now i just need to figure out what is going on so I can sound smart in class.
*Get it? Chicken of the Sea...Lobster of the Land...oh nevermind.
Let's have our informal AERE Happy Hour after the Distinguished Guest Lecture ("Life as a Lab: Using Field Experiments in Economics" John List [see note below]) on Saturday. This is a great chance to meet old friends and new and organize your dinner party!
What: AERE Happy Hour
Why: Meet old friends and new and organize your dinner party
Where: Hotel lobby bar (i.e.., Pulse -- "At 5:00 pm, an audible heartbeat will welcome the beginning of an eight-hour social hour as Pulse transforms into a vibrant lounge. As the evening progresses, the bar staff intensifies the showcasing of mixology behind the bar by giving demonstrations on how to make classic and new trendy drinks. The color of the iconic sail will change with the mood of the evening ending with a heightened pulsating array of radiant colors as a salute to the evening.")
When: 6:15 pm
See you in Atlanta!
Note: Speaking of field experiments, I withdrew my field experiment paper just now. Buy me a beer at happy hour and I'll explain why!
I'll try to post on that note soon (if I can get ready for my other sessions). Here is the excuse that I gave the SEA "We've been waiting on some essential data and it has not arrived." Nor will it ever.
Not so long ago, eating at a vegetarian restaurant could be an ascetic experience even for vegetarians. But all those meat eaters have no idea what they’re missing when they walk past the Laughing Seed Cafe. It distills much that is distinctive about modern Asheville’s charms and quirks to a single place. After the restaurant opened in 1991, it helped lead Asheville’s downtown revival and now highlights a list of eateries that likely give the city the heaviest concentration of vegetarian restaurants per capita on the East Coast. Owners Joan and Joe Eckert also founded the attached Jack of the Wood pub, which brewed Green Man Ales. They sold the brewing business, but still pour its distinctive products in the restaurant and pub. The food has an international turn, with influences on standing menu items that include Vietnamese, Thai, Cuban, Indian, Pakistani, French, Mexican, Jewish, and ingredients assembled in imaginative, clever ways. 40 Wall St, Asheville. 828-252-3445. http://laughingseed.jackofthewood.com
"This blog aims to look at more of the microeconomic ideas that can be used toward environmental ends. Bringing to bear a large quantity of external sources and articles, this blog presents a clear vision of what economic environmentalism can be."
Don't believe what they're saying
And allow me a quick moment to gush: ... The env-econ.net blog was more or less a lifeline in that period of my life, as it was one of the few ways I stayed plugged into the env. econ scene. -- Anonymous
... the Environmental Economics blog ... is now the default homepage on my browser (but then again, I guess I am a wonk -- a word I learned on the E.E. blog). That is a very nice service to the profession. -- Anonymous
"... I try and read the blog everyday and have pointed it out to other faculty who have their students read it for class. It is truly one of the best things in the blogosphere." -- Anonymous