Lively V&A debate is prompted by new 'Great Things Take Time' global education campaign by leading luxury Scotch whisky producer Chivas Brothers
Quick fix culture is losing its lustre and even fast turnaround commodities can depend on time and experience to succeed. This was the conclusion reached at a prestigious 'The Age Matters Debate', led by award winning historian Bettany Hughes and cultural commentator Peter Aspden, at London's V&A Museum and hosted by custodians of the largest inventory of aged, luxury Scotch whisky Chivas Brothers.
In a lively debate, Bettany Hughes shared that luxury alcohol was intrinsic to prestigious gatherings in classical civilization and that 'Symposium' translated means 'drinking together'. Sumptuous drinking and fine dining accompanied the intellectual gatherings hosted by Socrates and Plato, a fact only now coming to light as experts examine ancient bowls in minutiae.
Peter Aspden challenged Hughes that the highest quality arts and crafts are not conducive to commerce but she countered that our obsession with buying the very best was intrinsic to the upper classes of the great civilisations of Classical Greece and Venice. Market-places for international luxury goods at these times also provided a hub for the exchanging of ideas that shaped civilisation such as democracy and freedom of speech *.
"'Made in Egypt' was a recognised mark of quality in the Bronze Age and we were making desirable objects as long ago as 500 000 BC - humans are at their happiest and most productive when using their hands to create something beautiful - and then trade these with other human beings," explained Hughes.
Aspden and Hughes also explored the roles of time and craftsmanship in realising things of great note. Hughes noted that the Egyptian civilisation took around 2,000 years in establishing themselves as world-beater in creating icons such as the Great Pyramid of Giza - which took 18 years to be completed. Aspden referred to Malcolm Gladwell's seminal Outliers book, which states that to become successful at something, at least 10,000 hours need to be applied.
Aspden also explained that a complex journey often results in greater value - for example, Edvard Munch's The Scream.
'The Age Matters Debate' took place to coincide with the unveiling of a new global education campaign from Chivas Brothers, aimed at informing consumers about the true value of high aged Scotch whiskies.
Chivas Brothers has found 90% of whisky drinkers don't understand what the age statement on a bottle of whisky means. By law a Scotch whisky must be at least three years old but when a number such as 12 [year old], for example, appears on the label, this refers to the youngest whisky contained in the bottle. Many of the whiskies in a blend may be much, much older.
Chivas Brothers aims to bridge this knowledge gap** in a campaign entitled ‘Great Things Take Time’ to help us understand the value of what we're buying.
"We know whisky drinkers care about the age of the whisky, yet most don't know exactly what the age means. In a world which demands transparency, it’s never been more important for consumers to be able to navigate and recognise value in simple terms,” explains Christian Porta, Chairman and CEO of Chivas Brothers Limited.
The Chivas Brothers 'Great Things Take Time' education campaign will have been rolled out in nine markets*** by the end of 2012 and comprises advertising, a mentoring programme, POS, PR and digital activity, including a dedicated website: www.guaranteedwhisky.com. The campaign creative features historic icons such as the Taj Mahal, Angkor Wat and the Chinese Terracotta Army to draw attention to the fact that these historic icons took the same amount of time to be realised as Chivas Brothers’ Scotch whisky products.
The 'The Age Matters Debate' with Peter Aspden and Bettany Hughes will also be available to view at www.guaranteedagedwhisky.com in the future.
Note to Editors
*The Agora in Ancient Athens was both the market-place for
international luxury goods and the home to the Big Ideas of
civilisation - such as democracy and freedom of speech.
**With more than 85% of the market share of Scotch whisky aged
21 years old and over, Chivas Brothers has a long history of
expertise in producing award-winning, value-rich, aged whisky
The research was commissioned by Chivas Brothers Limited and
conducted by independent market research agency, Buzzback, in June,
2010. Chivas Brothers has spent the last two years sharing its
findings with the international drinks industry, specifically
alerting the on and off trade to the knowledge gap before embarking
on the Great Things Take Time education campaign among
The sample comprised over 2,000 males, in nine countries, aged
21+ (or 25+ in India). All had purchased whisky in the past
month. Countries: France, UK, USA, India, Korea, Russia,
Mexico, China, Brazil. Additional findings include:
- 94% believe the age statement serves as an indicator of
- 89% actively look for an age statement when making a decision
- 92% prefer to buy whisky with a clear age statement
- 97% agreed that whiskies which claim to be aged should clearly
state the age on the bottle
- 86% expect to pay a price premium for whiskies with an age
Chivas Brothers is the Scotch whisky and
premium gin business of Pernod Ricard - the world's co-leader in
wine and spirits. Chivas Brothers is the global leader in
luxury Scotch whisky with a portfolio that includes Chivas Regal,
Ballantine's, The Glenlivet, Royal Salute, Aberlour, Longmorn,
Scapa, 100 Pipers, Clan Campbell, Something Special and
*** Markets in which the Chivas Brothers campaign Great Things
Take Time will roll out before the end of 2012 include Australia,
Middle East & North Africa, global travel retail and the