Spirits sales in the US kept their head above water with a 1% volume rise in 2009 and are set to grow more strongly in 2010, according to the head of the US Distilled Spirits Council (DISCUS) this week. Here we take a look at five facts on the US spirits industry in 2009.

1.    The top ten markets for US spirits exports were Canada, UK, Australia, Germany, France, Japan, Netherlands, Spain, Italy, Mexico.

2.    Data by DISCUS showed 2.2% volume growth in the off-premise sector – 75% percent of the industry - as more people entertained at home.  That was offset by the on-premise sector - restaurants, bars, hotels and nightclubs -which continued to suffer with a 3% volume decline.

3.    The US spirits sector has experience 2.6% average annual growth over past ten years. Spirits volumes grew 1.4% in 2009. Spirits revenues have experienced 5.2% average annual growth in the last ten years.

4.    In 2009, the US defeated 114 of 120 separate tax bills. In 2009 alone, 32 of 40 tax threats were defeated with US$1bn in retail sales saved, according to DISCUS. In 2008, all 33 of 33 tax threats were defeated with $1bn in retail sales also saved.

5.    In the US, 36 states now allow Sunday sales of spirits. Of those states, 14 were have been passed since 2002. Additional supplier sales are estimated at $160m annually. Revenue growth is estimated at around $750m since 2002.