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Executive summary

Operators in the Distilleries industry distill, blend and mix liquors, which are then bottled and sold to downstream wholesalers or retailers. Over the five years to 2022, the industry has experienced stable growth even amid volatile economic conditions. Premiumization, in which consumers opt for higher-quality, higher-priced spirits, has been the main driver behind growth during the period. Additionally, a shift in consumer preferences toward craft and artisanal spirits has fueled growth in the number of enterprises, and encouraged merger and acquisition activity among major operators that seek to expand product portfolios. Mounting competition among operators as well as disruptions caused by the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic have mitigated revenue growth during the period. Over the five years to 2022, industry revenue has increased an annualized 3.2% to $16.5 billion, including an increase of 2.0% in 2022 alone.
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industry revenue;

industry profit;

industry margin;

industry employment;

industry major players;

industry key external drivers;

industry product & structure segmentation;

industry key trends;

industry Life Cycle;

industry Geographic Breakdown;

industry Key Success Factors;

industry Key statistics for previous years;

forecast of industry Key statistics for the next 5 years;

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Reference Wordlist

High barriers to entry mean that new companies struggle to enter an industry, while low barriers mean it is easy for new companies to enter an industry.

Compares the amount of money spent on capital (plant, machinery and equipment) with that spent on labor.
IBISWorld uses the ratio of depreciation to wages as a proxy for capital intensity. High capital intensity is more than $0.333 of capital to $1 of labor; medium is $0.125 to $0.333 of capital to $1 of labor; low is less than $0.125 of capital for every $1 of labor.

The dollar figures in the Key Statistics table, including forecasts, are adjusted for inflation using the current year (i.e. year published) as the base year. This removes the impact of changes in the purchasing power of the dollar, leaving only the "real" growth or decline in industry metrics. The inflation adjustments in IBISWorld’s reports are made using the US Bureau of Economic Analysis’ implicit GDP price deflator.

Colloquial Terminology

States in which the government controls the sale of alcohol, with uniform pricing. There are 17 control states in the United States.

Products of independently owned distilleries in which products are both made and bottled on-site.

The evaporation and collection of a liquid, undertaken to separate a more volatile liquid from a less volatile one; used as a means of purification.

The purchase of liquor in packaged form for consumption at home or anywhere other than the location of purchase.

The purchase of liquor for immediate consumption.


The coronavirus pandemic and the associated economic downturn shifted downstream demand within the industry. In 2020, demand from certain major markets, including restaurants, bars and hotels, declined substantially due to social distancing and other health and safety mandates. Many nonessential businesses were forced to temporarily close to prevent the spread of the virus, halting demand from these establishments. Conversely, demand from off-premise channels, primarily liquor stores, surged, largely offsetting any losses from on-premise markets. As health and safety mandates were eased and the economy began to recover in 2021, pent-up demand for on-premise establishments contributed to additional revenue growth in the latter half of the period.

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