80% of Consumers Want to Purchase Craft Spirits via Direct-to-Consumer Shipping

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Sovos ShipCompliant’s inaugural Direct-to-Consumer Spirits Shipping Report shows craft spirits drinkers want increased access to their favorite products

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With the launch of our Direct-to-Consumer Spirits Shipping Report, the findings of this survey support the growing sense that consumers will continue to desire and demand the convenience of direct shipping to their homes for all kinds of items.

In the last several years, consumers have become accustomed to the convenience of direct-to-consumer (DtC) shipping for everything from toilet paper to wine, so it’s no big surprise that regular craft spirits drinkers would like to see permissions expanded for DtC shipping of spirits. In fact, the inaugural Sovos ShipCompliant DtC spirits shipping report, conducted in partnership with the American Craft Spirits Association, revealed 8 in 10 regular craft spirits drinkers want the ability to purchase craft spirits via DtC shipping to their home.

As part of the Sovos ShipCompliant Direct-to-Consumer Spirits Shipping Report, The Harris Poll conducted online consumer surveys of 618 and 588 regular craft spirits drinkers, defined as adults 21+ who drink craft spirits at least once per month. The survey found that regular craft spirits drinkers report they would be more likely to try and to purchase craft spirits from out-of-state distilleries if they could have them shipped directly to their home. Seventy-three percent of regular craft spirits drinkers want to purchase craft spirits via DtC in the future, with 74% desiring to try new products that are not available locally. Additionally, 71% of regular craft spirits drinkers say they have tried a craft spirit while traveling that they wish they could purchase, however it is not available near their home.

“With the launch of our Direct-to-Consumer Spirits Shipping Report, the findings of this survey support the growing sense that consumers will continue to desire and demand the convenience of direct shipping to their homes for all kinds of items,” said Larry Cormier, vice president, general manager, Sovos ShipCompliant. “And the fact that 47% of regular craft spirits drinkers say they would spend more than $100 a month on craft spirits via DtC shipping highlights a missed opportunity for states that could be collecting tax revenue on every shipment, and also for the spirits industry, which is severely limited by the current regulatory landscape.”

Distilled spirits — including craft spirits — production and sales constitute a dynamic
marketplace. Currently there are about 2,290 craft distilleries located in all 50 states across the country and about 122,000 spirits brands. However, DtC spirits shipping is only legal in 8 locales (7 states and D.C.). From the Harris Poll survey, 79% of craft spirits drinkers would like to see laws change in order to expand DtC shipping, indicating a clear need for change.

“Direct-to-consumer shipping is poised to be a major imperative step in the evolution of the spirits marketplace, especially for craft distilleries,” said Margie A.S. Lehrman, CEO of the American Craft Spirits Association. “The current DtC market is small but is expected to grow and mature, particularly for smaller premium brands that consumers are demanding in different markets across the country.”

Other notable findings and trends described in the 2022 Direct-to-Consumer Spirits Shipping Report include:

  • Consumer desire for DtC shipping of craft spirits is on par with craft beer: When it comes to products that regular craft spirits drinkers would like to be able to purchase and have shipped directly to their homes/someone else’s home via a third-party carrier, craft spirits (46%) ranks similar to beer (49%).
  • The future of DtC spirits shipping is bright: 73% of regular craft spirits drinkers say they are likely to purchase craft spirits via DtC in the future, with 64% of regular craft spirits drinkers planning to purchase craft spirits via DtC shipping in 2023.
  • Changing laws on DtC spirits shipping will enhance the marketplace: From the Harris Poll survey, 76% of consumers would be more likely to try new craft spirits brands if they were able to be purchased via DtC shipping. Despite such broad interest among Americans for direct-to-consumer shipping of spirits, there has been limited success in efforts to expand DtC shipping.

The Direct-to-Consumer Spirits Shipping Report is a new collaboration between Sovos ShipCompliant and the American Craft Spirits Association, which examines the craft spirits purchasing behaviors and intent of U.S. consumers.

To download the full Direct-to-Consumer Spirits Shipping Report, visit DtCSpiritsReport.com. Additionally, visit this page for the most up-to-date information as more states open up to DtC shipping of spirits.

About Sovos ShipCompliant
Sovos ShipCompliant has been the leader in automated alcohol beverage compliance tools for more than 15 years, providing a full suite of cloud-based solutions to wineries, breweries, distilleries, importers, distributors and retailers to ensure they meet all federal and state regulations for direct-to-consumer and three-tier distribution. ShipCompliant’s solutions reduce risk, lessen the burden of compliance, accelerate bringing products to market and enable revenue growth. With 60+ partner integrations, Sovos ShipCompliant leads a robust ecosystem of technology partnerships, enabling powerful complementary solutions. For more information, visit https://www.sovos.com/shipcompliant/ and follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.

About American Craft Spirits Association
The American Craft Spirits Association is the only registered national nonprofit trade group
representing the U.S. craft spirits industry. Members vote for the 15 democratically elected
representatives who make up the Board of Directors, and this Board collectively works to govern the ACSA in a transparent, responsive manner and in accordance with ACSA bylaws. ACSA’s mission is to elevate and advocate for the community of craft spirits producers. For more information, visit AmericanCraftSpirits.org.

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Amelia Wright
Alloy, on behalf of Sovos ShipCompliant
855-300-8209
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Alexandra Sklansky Clough
on behalf of the American Craft Spirits Association
516-428-7210
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