Jinro, a popular soju brand in South Korea produced by Hite Jinro Co., was the world’s most popular alcoholic drink in 2017, according to IWSR, a London-based company that tracks the alcoholic beverage market.
Two other Korean soju brands were included in IWSR Real 100, a ranking of the world’s top 100 largest spirits brands by volume. They were Chum Churum from Lotte Chilsung Beverage Co., and Good Day Soju from Muhak Co.
Hite Jinro sold 75.91 million nine-liter cases of Jinro soju last year, up 0.8 percent from the previous year. It retained the top position for two consecutive years, according to IWSR.
Chum Churum placed 7th, two notches down from 5th in 2016, by selling 25.55 million cases, up 2.2%, while Good Day Soju slipped from 9th to 10th by selling 18.55 million cases, down 1.3% from 2016.
The world’s second most-consumed spirits brand was Ruang Khao of Thai Beverage, which sold 31.75 million cases in 2017. It was followed by Officer’s Choice, an Indian whisky from ABD with sales of 31.51 million cases.
The top 10 list included Smirnoff vodka at number six. Smirnoff is the first truly global brand on the list, selling over 25m cases across 155 countries, and rising one place in the rankings this year.
Johnnie Walker Scotch whisky grew by 2% last year, but fell one place to 12th, just ahead of Bacardi rum, unchanged in 13th, and Jack Daniel’s whiskey, which rose two places to 14th.