Luxury Spirits Brands Continue to Grow

Luxury spirits brands grew 15 percent in the third quarter of 2022 compared with the same quarter of 2021, according to the Distilled Spirits Council’s latest Luxury Brand Index (LBI) report.

“While inflation continues to cut into consumers’ discretionary incomes, a special bottle of spirits remains an attainable luxury that brings great pleasure to many adults,” said Christine LoCascio, Distilled Spirits Council Chief of Policy and Strategy. “Sales of luxury spirits are also being buoyed by the resurgence of restaurants and bars coming out of the pandemic, as well as consumers elevating their cocktail experiences and bars at home.”

The LBI, which analyzes sales of spirits brands at the top end of the spirits market, tracks the performance of brands that have a 750ml retail price of $50 or more.

The spirits sector remained resilient amid ongoing economic pressures with sales of luxury spirits brands exhibiting strong growth in the third quarter, albeit at a slower rate.

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“It is a very positive sign that consumers are continuing to select luxury spirits as we head into the important holiday entertaining and gift-giving season,” said LoCascio.  

LoCascio noted that luxury American Whiskey and Tequila represented the largest increases in annual growth rate in the third quarter.

Key highlights of the LBI 2022 Third-Quarter Report include:

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  • American Whiskey showed the largest increase this quarter with a 33% annual growth rate followed by Tequila, which remained strong at 29%.
  • Japanese Whisky turned in a very solid performance growing 20% after registering a decline in the year-ago period.
  • Irish Whiskey also performed strongly rising 17% in the third quarter after attaining a similarly high growth rate of 19% in the year-ago period. 

Over the five years between the third quarter of 2017 and 2022, all spirits categories included in the luxury index increased annual growth ranging from 8 to 44 percent, with an average rate of 23 percent.

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