The American Craft Spirits Association (ACSA) and Park Street announced highlights from the 2022 Craft Spirits Data Project (CSDP) at its Annual Craft Spirits Economic Briefing. The Craft Spirits Data Project, which was first introduced in 2016, is a first-of-its-kind research initiative that aims to provide a solid and reliable fact base for evaluating performance and trends in the U.S. craft spirits industry.
The ongoing CSDP, which seeks to quantify the number, size, and impact of craft spirits producers in the U.S., is an effort led by ACSA and Park Street.
Key findings and highlights revealed during the briefing include the following:
- The U.S. craft spirits market volume reached over 13.2m 9-liter cases in retail sales in 2021, growing at an annual rate of 10.4%. In value terms, the market reached $7.5 billion in sales, growing at an annual rate of 12.2%. U.S. craft spirits market share of total U.S. spirits reached 4.9% in volume and 7.5% in value in 2021, up from 4.7% in volume and 7.1% in value in 2020.
- The number of active craft distillers in the U.S. grew by 17.4% over the last year to 2,687 as of August 2022. Active craft distillers are defined as licensed U.S. distilled spirits producers that removed 750,000 proof gallons (or 394,317 9L cases) or less from bond, market themselves as craft, are not openly controlled by a large supplier and have no proven violation of the ACSA Code of Ethics.
- Despite economic headwinds, craft producers have consistently found value in reinvesting in their businesses. On average, producers invested $337,100 in 2021 alone. This amount decreased slightly (-2%) from 2020, but the sharp uptick in craft producer count bolstered the total amount invested in the U.S. craft spirits segment by 9% year-over-year to $826 million. The primary motivation for investment listed by those surveyed was additional production to meet demand, followed by construction to increase visitor space.
- Craft distiller sales are almost evenly split between home state/tasting rooms (46.7%) and other states (53.3%) in 2021. Direct shipping remains a critical opportunity for continued craft distiller growth.
- Exports provided an important runway for growth in 2021. Exports of U.S. craft spirits increased by 58%, reaching 164,000 9-liter cases.
- Some states are “craftier” than others, with California, New York, Texas, Pennsylvania, and Washington leading the pack. Texas is now the third most concentrated state, taking the fourth slot last year in 2020. Washington fell into the fifth slot, having been third in 2020. The top five states by the number of craft distilleries – CA (225), NY (199), TX (173), PA (156) & WA (117) — make up 32.4% of the U.S. craft distiller universe, and the next five states — CO (112), MI (103), NC (93), OR (86), and FL (85) — comprise an additional 17.8% of the market. The remaining states represent 49.8% of the market.
View the full 2022 Craft Spirits Data Project here.