Beam Global Spirits and Wine brand Maker’s Mark aims to grown exports by almost 100% in 2009.
Assistant master distiller Denny Potter said that although the market was ‘nuts’, the company hopes to export 15% of production this year, compared to 8% in 2008.
The distillery is currently being expanded and will reach 2.25m case capacity by 2020. In 2008, the company sold 850,000 cases. Potter estimated that by 2020 exports may be as high as 35%.
Top export markets include Australia and Japan. The UK makes up 12% of exports.
Maker’s Mark attributes consistent double-digit growth to the growing cocktail culture and despite a shift towards the off-trade in the US and the UK, the company is investing in a bartender-training programme.
The Maker’s Mark Embassy operates in different countries including the UK, Russia, Spain, Canada and Germany, with ambassadors who train bartenders in selected outlets.
Potter added: “It’s not about volume for us. It’s about value.”
Potter is also hot on environmentally-friendly initiatives and by 2014, the Kentucky-based distillery aims to become 0% discharge to landfill.