Kentucky Distillers' Association worried about possible tariff

03/06/2018 09:46 AM

President Trump’s proposed trade policy with foreign nations could have an impact locally in Kentucky.

President Trump has said he plans to impose a 25 percent tariff on steel imports and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum. The idea has many worried that a “trade war” could ensue, causing other countries to impose their own taxes on exports from the United States.

Kentucky Distillers’ Association has concerns a possible tariff could hurt the exporting of local spirits. Eric Gregory, President of Kentucky Distillers’ Association, issued the following statement on Monday:

“As we’ve seen this morning, many aspects of the President’s proposed trade policies are not yet known or are still evolving, including whether tariffs would exempt certain trading partners.

Therefore, it’s premature to speculate on the specific impact to Kentucky’s signature Bourbon and distilled spirits industry until the facts are clear.

“Bourbon is one of the Commonwealth’s most historic and treasured industries, a booming $8.5 billion economic engine that generates as many as 17,500 jobs with an annual payroll topping $800 million, pours $825 million into tax coffers each year, and drives tourism through the KDA’s famous Kentucky Bourbon Trail® adventures.

“U.S. and EU spirits exporters have enjoyed duty-free access to each other’s markets for more than two decades, which has greatly benefited both spirits producers and consumers, and has resulted in increased exports, jobs and consumer choice.

“Any efforts to impose retaliatory tariffs on U.S. spirits exports to the EU will jeopardize this long-standing partnership, harm consumers through higher prices and more limited product availability, and significantly threaten the distilling renaissance that is creating industry jobs and generating billions in capital investment.”

Michon Lindstrom

Michon is a producer for Pure Politics. Michon comes to Kentucky from Springfield, Illinois where she served as the statehouse reporter for the NBC affiliate. During her time in the Land of Lincoln she covered the state’s two year budget impasse and the largest school funding overall in Illinois history. Pure Politics airs weeknights at 7 and 11:30 on Spectrum News. Follow Michon on Twitter at @MichonLindstrom or reach her by email at


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