Sales of the drink topped half a billion pounds in the hospitality sector last year with a record-breaking 49 new distilleries opening across the UK.
In pubs alone gin was the best-selling spirit of the last five years, with sales rising 35 per cent since 2010.
The boom has been linked to gin’s growing popularity with younger drinkers. According to research by Mintel 42 per cent of Brits aged 18-34 drunk gin in November and December 2015, compared to just over a quarter of over-45s.
Miles Beale, chief executive of the Wine and Spirit Trade Association, said: “This is a hugely exciting time for everyone involved in the UK gin industry. We have seen an incredible rise in the number of distilleries setting up in the last year.
“This is a massive achievement and shows the Great British spirit continues to boom.”
And it’s not just the UK that has a taste for a gin and tonic. UK Government figures reveal that almost 140m bottles of gin made in the UK are now exported to 139 countries worldwide every year.
International sales have risen 37 per cent in the past five years to £1.79bn.
But despite the record growth UK spirits duty is still the fourth highest in the EU at £7.26 on an average bottle, compared to £2.18 in Germany.
The WSTA said customers were ‘outraged’ over the tax and warned it could impact on the developing UK gin market.
“This isn't just unfair on UK consumers it's also unfair on great British businesses, like those emerging right now creating export-friendly British gin,” said Beale.
The WSTA has called for further government support for the drinks sector in next week’s Budget.
“The broader wine and spirit market remains sensitive to change with mixed trading conditions seen across the on and off trade. It is therefore important that we continue to call for sustained support from the Government for an increasingly valuable British industry,” said Beale.