Duty-free sector heartened by distilled spirits market data

Bill Lumley


DISCUS data shows growing shift to ultra-premium spirits brands by US consumers

The distilled spirits industry market grew in 2012 as it gained share from both beer and wine, according to the Distilled Spirits Council of the US (DISCUS). US supplier sales grew by 3% in volume to 202m cases and supplier revenue grew 4.5% to $21.3bn as consumers continued to move to higher end premium and super-premium products.

According to DISCUS, the distilled spirits sector grew its market share for the third consecutive year to 34.3%, taking share from both beer and wine.

Patrón Spirits COO and DISCUS chairman John McDonnell told DFNI: “The DISCUS data clearly shows that consumers in the US are increasingly seeking ultra-premium spirits brands—those same products that are featured at duty free stores. It's positive news for the travel retail sector, that consumers are buying more high-end spirits.”

Distilled Spirits Council president and CEO Peter Cressy told a press briefing: “Moderate growth driven by product innovations and sophisticated line extensions highlighted 2012 for distilled spirits companies of all sizes. The premiumisation trend continues to captivate consumers here in the US and around the globe.”

DISCUS data showed vodka was the largest spirits category last year, with volumes increasing 4% to 65m 9l cases, and super-premium vodkas up by 10%. Vodka supplier revenues grew to $5.5bn. Bourbon and Tennessee whiskey volumes, the largest whiskey category, climbed 5.2%, with super premium products up by 12.4%. Irish whiskey continued its rapid growth with volumes up by 22.5%, while single malt Scotch grew at double-digit rates, with volumes up 13%.

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