Bottles of award-winning Japanese Suntory Hibiki blended whisky, on display at the 'Whisky Live Tokyo 2012, Tokyo International Bar Show', on May 5, 2012 in Tokyo, Japan. (Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert/Getty Images)

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Inside the Japanese Whisky Shortage

Poduction cuts a decade ago are rearing their ugly head today.

Japan is facing a whisky shortage, according to a story in Kotaku. The company Suntory announced yesterday that its Hakushu 12-year-old and its Hibiki 17-year-old will soon no longer be available for sale.

These two whisky bottlings are the latest in a trend of Japanese whisky-sellers having to take their product off shelves due to lack of supply. The trend is many years in the making. In the early and mid-2000s, whisky was not selling particularly well in Japan, leading whisky-makers to slow their production.

Japenese whisky, of course, needs time to mature, thus the production cuts of 10-15 years ago are rearing their ugly head in 2018 as demand is much higher. A 2014 spike in popularity due to a TV show about Masataka Taketsuru, the father of Japanese whisky, also helped deplete sellers’ current reserves.  The shortage, unfortunately, may only get worse.

Read the full story at Kotaku