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Sales of bourbon, Tenn. whiskey up around world

| Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2014, 10:21 p.m.

Global thirst for Kentucky bourbon and Tennessee whiskey caused exports to spike beyond $1 billion for the first time ever in 2013, a distilled spirits trade group said on Tuesday.

Together, bourbon and sour mash exports grew a projected 5 percent, from $956.8 million in 2012 to just past $1 billion last year, the Distilled Spirits Council announced.

Bourbon and sour mash revenues shot up even higher at home, rising by a projected 10.2 percent last year, the council said.

Their performance overseas drove overall American distilled spirits exports above $1.5 billion, the council said. It marked the fourth straight year of record exports for American-crafted spirits.

The steady rise reflects a growing reputation for American distilled spirits overseas, the group said.

“There is a genuine affection for ‘Brand America' as a symbol of quality and taste,” said Christine LoCascio, the council's senior vice president for international trade.

The council said the export figures are based partly on data from the U.S. International Trade Commission.

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