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Effects of Bourbon shortage now being felt in US

Liquor stores and bars across the US are now beginning to feel the effects of the Bourbon shortage “with no end in sight”, according to one producer.

American-oak-barrels
The full effects of the Bourbon shortage are now taking hold in the US, despite increased investment in distillation

Buffalo Trace Distillery warned last year of a shortage of its flagship Bourbons Eagle Rare and Buffalo Trace as demand for the whiskey outpaced supply.

In May 2013 it warned consumers that they may find it difficult to locate bottles of the brands, but has now said the full force of that shortage is only just being felt.

In a statement, Buffalo Trace Distillery said: “Last year we warned consumers that a shortage was looming, but many markets across the nation are just now feeling the full effects.”

The distillery, owned by Sazerac, has increased distillation, added more bottling lines and hired a full-time barrel allocation manager in an attempt to produce more liquid to meet demand.

However, with most Bourbons needing between 8-10 years to fully mature, the distillery can’t predict when the shortage will end.

“The increase in sales, coupled with the aging process and evaporation loss, leads to a shortage with no end in sight,” the statement continued. “Thank you for your patience and understanding as we try to catch up!”

The comment comes as the Kentucky Distillers’ Association reported stocks of Bourbon have returned to levels not seen since the 1970s.

According to the group, more than five million barrels of Bourbon worth US$1.9billion are currently resting in Kentucky, an increase of 150% in the last 15 years.

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