Dr Jim Beveridge, master blender for Johnnie Walker, has been awarded an OBE for services to the Scotch whisky industry in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.
Beveridge, who has worked for Johnnie Walker owner Diageo for almost 40 years, is only the sixth person to hold the title of Johnnie Walker master blender since its founding in the 19th century.
Based at Diageo’s blending lab at Menstrie, Clackmannanshire, Beveridge oversees a team of 12 blenders who are responsible for maintaining the quality and consistency of all Diageo’s Scotch whisky brands.
The award comes as Johnnie Walker prepares to celebrate its 200th anniversary in 2020.
Said Beveridge, “We believe we are the custodians of our brands, standing on the shoulders of the giants who went before us. I really feel that today.
“This is recognition of everyone, over the years, who has been involved in making Johnnie Walker the leading global brand that it is.”
He added, “I am honoured to accept this award on behalf of everyone who contributes to making Johnnie Walker.
‘It is a team effort by all the women and men who work in our distilleries, coppersmiths, cooperage, warehouses and bottling halls across Scotland.”
Diageo chief executive Ivan Menezes, said, “Jim epitomises everything that makes Johnnie Walker and Scotch whisky great. He is dedicated to his craft and passionate about the quality of his product.
“Most importantly he is a wonderful person and that is why he is so highly regarded not just in Diageo but throughout the Scotch whisky industry.”
In 2016 Glen Grant master distiller Dennis Malcolm was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours, just months after David Stewart, malt master for Balvenie was named an MBE in the New Year’s Honours List.