Distillers report big sales growth due to promotional month

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RICHMOND (WCAV) -- September was the third annual Virginia Spirits Month, which has been driving sales for distilleries in the Commonwealth.

According to a release, this was the second straight year that partnership between the Virginia Tourism Corporation, the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority, and the Virginia Distillers Association has driven major revenue growth.

Sales of Virginia distilled spirits in 2018 went up 20 percent over the same period in 2017 and more than doubled sales at distillery stores over the first year of the month-long celebration.

Data from the Virginia ABC says sales at both ABC stores and distillery stores during September this year totaled almost $1.5 million.

The release says September sales at distillery stores alone grew to more than $640,000, more than double the total sale two years ago.

"We couldn't be more excited about consumer response to Virginia Spirits Month and how that support has continued to generate revenue for our distilling industry and our partners, from distillers to restaurants to the Commonwealth, said Gareth H. Moore, VDA President and CEO of the Virginia Distillery Company. "At the same time, the increase in distillery store sales, despite store closures during Hurricane Florence, shows that consumers not only value Virginia Spirits, but also want to see where they are produced. This has significant implications for Virginia tourism and is proof positive that 'Virginia is for Spirits Lovers,' and our partnership with Virginia ABC and VTC will drive economic benefits for many years to come."

In 2008, Virginia has ten distilleries. Now, there are almost 70.