Distillers on the island of Mull have had to cease production of their world-famous whisky for the first time in nearly two decades.
Tobermory, one of the oldest distilleries in Scotland, has stopped making single malts as a result of a particularly dry summer, despite wet conditions elsewhere in the country.
The drought forced the distillery, which was built in 1798, to wind down production when the private loch it uses for water dried up due to lack of rainfall.
This is the first time the company has stopped producing its two single malts - Ledaig and Tobermory - since it was taken over by parent company, Burn Stewart, in 1993.
But managers have assured customers that they are well-supplied, and that production will begin again once there is enough rain.
Ian MacMillan, Burn Stewart’s master blender and distilleries manager explained the decision to stop production at the Tobermory Distillery.
He said: “The water for our single malt comes from a small private loch on the Island and over the last few weeks we have seen the water level occasionally dip to such an extent that we have temporarily halted production in order to preserve the quality and consistency of our whisky.
“The purity of the water we use is critical to the quality of our whisky and we have now decided to suspend production until a proper rainfall replenishes the Loch to a satisfactory level.
“However, Tobermory Single Malt drinkers need not panic, we have a plentiful stock of the single malt ready to be bottled and supply will not be affected.”
The Hebridean island experienced less than a fifth of its average rainfall in the first two weeks of June, though showers have been forecast for the forthcoming week.
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