As demand for whiskey booms worldwide, distilleries like Buffalo Trace continue to have a hard time meeting supply.
“We’re making more bourbon every day,” Buffalo Trace’s master distiller Harlen Wheatley said in a press release. “Still, it’s hard to keep up. Although we have more bourbon than last year when we first announced the rolling blackouts, we’re still short and there is no way to predict when supply will catch up with demand.”
In the mean time, the company says it has hired an allocation manager who will be in charge of stocking markets with Buffalo Trace, Eagle Rare and Blanton’s on a monthly basis.
The market’s feeling the worst pressure on the premium category, the company says — so expect it to get even harder to come by those coveted whiskies that are already in short supply, like Pappy Van Winkle, or the Antique Collection, which includes George T. Stagg, William Larue Weller, Eagle Rare 17 Year-Old, Sazerac Rye 18 Year-Old and Thomas H. Handy Sazerac.
Boom and bust cycles have long characterized the whiskey industry’s history, driven in no small part by the fact that whiskey must be aged before it’s brought to market. In the case of Buffalo Trace’s whiskies, that often means periods ranging from eight years to two decades or more. The industry is also facing a temporary shortage of American oak barrels expected to last up to two years, according to The Spirits Business.
Buffalo Trace broke ground on a $20 million distribution center last month, according to The State Journal, a Frankfort paper. Sazerac, the distillery’s parent company, plans to invest $50 million to expand its other two distilleries in Kentucky — Glenmore Distillery in Owensboro and the Barton 1792 Distillery in Bardstown
Image via Random Letters @ Flickr.