ARGYLL & Bute Council has granted The Islay Boys planning permission to build the island’s 12 distillery.
Mackay Smith and Donald MacKenzie both hail from the Rhinns peninsula on Islay’s west coast and launched their whisky bottling company, The Islay Boys, in 2016.
Now, the pair has teamed up with Ian Macleod Distillers to build Laggan Bay distillery near Islay’s airport.
Leonard Russell, chairman of Ian Macleod Distillers, said: “I have known and worked with The Islay Boys for a long time, and I’m delighted to be able to bring our long experience in creating quality Scotch single malts to the Laggan Bay distillery project.”
The new building at Glenegedale in Laggan Bay will also house a brewery for Islay Ales, which The Islay Boys bought in 2018.
News of planning permission for the Laggan Bay distillery comes amid a busy week for the whisky industry.
American spirts giant Brown-Forman has unveiled plans to invest more than £30 million in its GlenDronach distillery near Huntley, which it bought from whisky veteran Billy Walker and his South African business partners in 2016.
The expansion plan will more than double production capacity and will take three years to complete.
The US owner has already invested cash in the Highland distillery’s visitors’ centre.
Meanwhile, Scotch Whisky Investments is consulting the public on plans to erect 24 whisky warehouses at Glenrothes in Fife.
Back in March, the company submitted plans to build four warehouses, but has now expanded its intentions.
The proposals also include a bottling line, cooperage, and offices.
Separately, the company is applying to build its head office at Falkland, along with a restaurant, museum, and accommodation.
Read more news and reviews on Scottish Field’s food and drink pages.
Plus, check out Blair Bowman’s whisky column in the August issue of Scottish Field magazine.