Let’s crash an airplane

Welcome to The WC — your weekly shot of awesome.

Today, we’ve got:

  1. India’s whisky scene is bigger than you think
  2. The economics of olive trees
  3. One more way you might die
  4. The next billion-dollar sport
  5. Memento mori

India on the Rocks

The largest ​consumer​ of whisky globally isn’t Scotland, Ireland, the US or even China. It’s India.

Annually, India “now accounts for almost one in every two bottles of whisky sold in the world. The planet’s most populous country also recently leapfrogged France to become the world’s biggest market for Scotch.”

Further, seven of the top ten whisky brands are made in India, partly due to historically high import tariffs.

Most of the stuff stays in India, but an upper echelon is emerging that’s suitable for export. And while some whiskies there are made using strict Scotch rules, others imbue a local flavor.

For example, “Godawan #1 is finished in a cask seasoned with rasna and jatamansi, two botanicals traditionally used in ayurveda and perfumery.”

We’re leading an ​investor field trip to Tequila Mexico in February​. Maybe we should check out India’s whisky scene next.

The economics of olive trees

Now for another pricy and tasty liquid.

Since summer 2022, ​the price of olive oil​ has done this.

Up and to the right

​Says​ Kyle Holland, noted vegetable oils analyst, “The issues contributing to prices trending at near all-time highs are largely poor weather and a severely dry growing period for much of the Mediterranean, but most importantly in Spain, which is a major producer and exporter of olive oil.”

It’s got so bad that ​chainsaw-wielding thieves​ are roaming the Spanish, Greek, and Italian countrysides cutting down olive-laden branches and, sometimes, entire trees.

As someone who lives in Spain, I can confirm this.

Undeterred, we’ve got 3/4 an acre and are considering planting perhaps twenty-five olive trees on a patch of it.

Olive trees here?

Should it go well, perhaps we’ll make it more of a thing, but here’s the math just for fun.

  • 25 ​one-year-old saplings​ at $4 each – $100
  • Drip irrigation system with timer – $200
  • Compost + labor – free but time-consuming

They start producing fruit after 3 – 5 years and are considered mature after 10.

So, how much can you make from 1/8 acre of olives based on historic wholesale prices?

Not to shabby

No one’s going to retire off this, but it’s not too bad for a productive hobby that’s also aesthetically pleasing.

PS: You can cheat by ​buying trees that are already three years old​, and the price increase is only about $6 per plant. Probably worth it.

Maybe reconsider your travel plans

“It is only a matter of time before something catastrophic happens.”

That’s the upshot of an under-the-radar air traffic control ​crisis​.

A combination of fatigue, lack of training, and understaffing mean that the skies are more terrifying than ever.

“Controllers are making mistakes left and right. Fatigue is extreme … The margin for safety has eroded tenfold. Morale is rock bottom. I catch myself taking risks and shortcuts I normally would never take.”

The stats are alarming.

99% of US air traffic control facilities (that’s 310 out of 313) do not have enough certified controllers for ​basic safety standards​. We’re now more than halfway through 2023, and some controllers already have racked up more than 400 hours of overtime.

Overall, America’s aviation infrastructure is short 32,000 air traffic controllers, pilots, and mechanics.

Time to get these guys on the case.

Is women’s volleyball setting up for a spike in popularity?

We pay an alarming amount of attention to the growth of underserved and up-and-coming sports.

Up next? ​Women’s volleyball​.

This is the least gratuitous image of a woman playing beach volleyball I could get ChatGPT to create.

Some surprising stats:

  • There are three separate pro volleyball leagues either live or planned to launch through 2025.
  • League One Volleyball, a youth club volleyball biz, raised $35 million in a Series B round.
  • There are 408k members of USA Volleyball, and it’s growing nearly 10% YoY.
  • Volleyball participation among high school and university students has grown 40% since 2017, making it the fastest-growing high school sport in the USA.
  • Women’s volleyball is the third-most watched sport on the Big Ten Network after football and men’s basketball.
  • A tripleheader of women’s volleyball matches in September drew 641k viewers.

I don’t know if women’s volleyball is the next…whatever…but I sure wouldn’t bet against it. And I’d certainly prefer to watch it rather than pickleball.

Put your mortality into perspective

Feeling good about yourself? Memento mori, amigo​.

It’s all downhill from here

Time for a drink.

That’s all for this week; I hope you enjoyed it.

Disclosures

  • Our friends at ​Solenic Medical​ sponsored this issue
  • We get a few cents if you click on affiliate links
  • Interested in working for Alts? Check this ​job post​ and apply through Upwork. Or reply to this email — better chance we’ll see it that way.

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Author

Picture of Wyatt Cavalier

Wyatt Cavalier

With a background in finance & intelligence analysis, Wyatt has an unhealthy obsession with finding the best blue chip investment opportunities. His previous newsletter, Fractional, resonated deeply with subscribers, bringing actionable insights and unconventional trading strategies. His rare book collection specializes in banned editions. He currently lives in Spain with his beautiful wife, three young boys, and dog Monty.

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