Rye whiskey volumes up by 778% in the USBy Nicola Carruthers
Rye whiskey volumes have increased “rapidly” in the US, having grown by 778% from 2009 to 2016, according to US trade body the Distilled Spirits Council.
Since 2009, rye whiskey volumes have jumped from 88,000 cases to nearly 775,00 in 2016.
This translates to a 900% jump in revenue from slightly more than US$15 million in supplier revenues in 2009 to nearly US$160 million in 2016.
The council predicts that rye whiskey will continue to grow in the double digits through 2017, bolstered by Bulleit, Jim Beam and Wild Turkey, as well as small producers that have sprung up since the reconstruction of George Washington’s Distillery.
In addition, the Distilled Spirits Council requested that the United States International Trade Commission (USITC) establish a new export code for US exports of bottled rye whiskey, to recognise it as a spirit not only in the US but also abroad.
The new export code will allow the US government to track exports of American rye whiskey, similar to how Bourbon is tracked.
“American rye whiskey is retaking its rightful place among the world’s great distilled spirits, a place that was lost to Prohibition,” said Distilled Spirits Council president and CEO Kraig R. Naasz. “The growth of rye whiskey has also benefitted American farmers, and underscores what George Washington knew, that producing distilled spirits is the essence of value-added agriculture.”
In August this year, the Distilled Spirits Council hit out at a report claiming alcohol abuse is on the rise in the US, arguing that there is actually a decline in alcohol use disorders.