Though this popularity certainly put things over the edge, CNN reports that other major events foreshadowed the shortage. Distilleries going out of business in the 1980's, and a lull in exports 10 years ago, both played a part in whisky running low and whisky prices running up.
Now everyone's trying to boost production as quickly as possible, but given that this whisky needs to be aged, the shortage could potentially last 10 to 15 years. CNN quoted brand manager of Macallan Charlie Whitfield saying, "We are currently working at full capacity -- seven days a week, 24 hours a day. We just need to be patient and allow those casks to work their magic."
Is there any way to speed up magic? Sadly, no. And as Rickesh Kishnani, creator of a whisky investment firm, says, "The shortage of old and rare single malt has already started, and it's going to get worse."