TORONTO, Feb. 12 /CNW Telbec/ - Spirits Canada today confirmed that
beverage alcohol sales data from across the country indicated that Whisky
remained the largest selling spirits category in calendar 2008, representing
more than 28% of overall spirits sales.
With 3 out of every 4 bottles of whisky sold being Canadian Whiskies,
Canada far outsells whiskies from Scotland, Ireland and the United States.
Vodka and Rum sales, however, continue to close the gap with whiskies and
now represent 26% and 19% of overall spirits sales respectively.
Spirits categories enjoying the largest percentage growth rates last year
included Irish Whiskey (+11%), Tequila (+7%) and Vodka (+5%).
Overall, the total volume of spirits grew by 1.1% in line with Statistic
Canada's estimated population growth (1.2%).
"Given the sharp economic downturn over the last quarter of the year, we
are certainly pleased and relieved that spirits sales continue to grow here in
Canada", explained Mr. Jan H. Westcott, President and CEO of Spirits Canada.
"Canada actually only represents about 30% of overall sales for Canadian
spirits producers, with the vast majority of production destined for
international markets, so we have to keep a close eye on all our key markets."
"The United States represents over 80% of the Spirits Industry's foreign
sales and as such is incredibly important to the fiscal health of our local
manufacturing plants and unfortunately a combination of the U.S. economic
crisis and the volatility of the Canadian dollar have conspired to wreck havoc
on these exports", stated Mr. Westcott.
The value of Canadian spirits exports to the United States declined by
15% ($60 million) in the first 11 months of 2008.
Spirits Canada is the only national trade association representing the
interests of the Canadian Distilled Spirits Industry.
Table 1: Summary Canada Domestic Sales Volume (9 Litres cases)
12 months ending December 31
Canadian Whisky 3,630,885 3,578,503
Scotch Whisky 915,923 901,750
Irish Whiskey 52,973 58,689
American Whiskey 226,523 239,851
Sub Total Whiskies 4,826,304 4,778,793
Vodka 4,229,725 4,453,144
Rum 3,141,251 3,202,944
Liqueurs 2,742,203 2,696,484
Gin 761,078 753,134
Brandy 639,370 624,196
Tequila 223,346 238,747
Others 214,202 221,390
Grand Total 16,777,479 16,968,832
Source: Spirits Canada/ Association of Canadian Distillers sales
Table 2: Summary Canadian Spirits Exports to the U.S. (Value in CND $)
11 months ending November 30th
Total Spirits Exports $384,666,000 $324,690,000
Source: Statistics Canada
For further information:
For further information: Mr. Jan H. Westcott, President & CEO, Spirits
Canada, (416) 626-0100, Cell: (416) 707-8851