Blog: Olly WehringThe US drinks market - Anecdotally

Olly Wehring | 22 October 2009

A few weeks ago, I was up on Islay at the official opening of the Kilchoman distillery, the island's first new distillery in over century.

While I was there, I bumped into John Campbell, manager of Beam Global's Laphroaig distillery, who I hadn't seen since I was last up there over a year ago.

John was heading to the US for a few weeks on a bit of a country tour for Laphroaig. Knowing how down to earth folk in John's position are, I asked if he'd let me know his thoughts on the consumer climate in the country.

Here are his thoughts:

"The east coast has felt more of the brunt of recession, but people are beginning to be more positive about growth and are seeing the green shoots of recovery happening.

Central US is in a similar predicament, but people are pushing harder now to make things happen, so more bullish.

I was only in LA on the west coast, so what recession?! Life is always good there.

The on-trade in the US has slowed outside of LA, NY and Chicago, but off-trade is rocketing away and I think people were just beginning to say if I’m still in work, I’m going to spend as there is no point in saving right now.

People are more confident in their employment again as well, and as I said becoming more bullish, just the way we like our special friends in America."

Many thanks, John.


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