The US Government has granted the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) US$1.09m (AU$1.63m) to promote American spirits in key international markets in 2024, including Australia.
Coming through the US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Market Access Program (MAP), DISCUS was one of nearly 70 agricultural organisations to receive MAP funding from the USDA in 2024.
Robert Maron, the DISCUS Vice President of International Trade, said: “DISCUS’ partnership with USDA in the Market Access Program over the past 18 years has played an important role in the growth of the craft distilling movement in the United States by helping small distilleries expand into international markets.”
DISCUS began participating in the MAP in 2006 and has conducted spirits promotions in more than 20 foreign markets, including Australia, Austria, Brazil, Bulgaria, Chile, China, Colombia, Czech Republic, Germany, France, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Korea, Romania, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, Thailand, Taiwan, United Kingdom and Vietnam. Since that time, total US spirits exports have increased by nearly 145 per cent, from US$831m in 2006 to $2.06bn in 2022.
“US distilled spirits are in demand around the world,” said Christine LoCascio, DISCUS Chief of Policy, Strategy and Membership. “We are grateful to the US Department of Agriculture for its support and partnership in promoting American spirits exports from an array of products from small, medium and large American distillers.
“With some of the most iconic spirits in the world, as well as a range of innovative new products, American distillers are truly setting the bar.”
Through the MAP program, DISCUS promotes the US spirits sector by educating the hospitality industry, adult consumers and media in key international markets on the taste, heritage and style of American distilled spirits.
In making the announcement, USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service Administrator Daniel B. Whitley said: “These programs provide a significant boost to the US agricultural industry, which in turn helps strengthen the economy not just in rural communities, but across the entire United States.”
DISCUS promotes the range of American spirits with a particular focus on the unique qualities of American Whiskeys, including Bourbon, Tennessee Whiskey, American Rye Whiskey and American Single Malt, which account for the majority of US spirits exports worldwide.