Cognac exports to the UK decreased by 6.7% in volume and 4.1% in value during the 2018-19 financial year.

Overall the famous region saw exports grow to a record-breaking 211.1 million bottles due to soaring demand from the US and Eastern Europe.

However, some of its traditionally strong markets saw declines, including the UK and Germany, which are its fourth and sixth largest export markets respectively.

Cognac producers shipped 94.3 million bottles to the US over the past year, 26.6 million bottles to Singapore and 24.8 million to China. The UK was next with 10 million, which is more than double the amount sold in the domestic market. Germany was sixth, with 4.5 million bottles.

The region reported that cognac contributed to almost a quarter of French wine and spirits exports by value over the past year, putting it ahead of all other major appellations.

It said the cognac industry now employs 60,000 people.