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Cheers! Kentucky’s bourbon industry witnessing record growth

The Kentucky bourbon industry, which witnessed more than 1 million visits from tourists in 2018 at Kentucky Bourbon Trail distilleries, has doubled the number of jobs and the associated payroll over the last 10 years.

During a press conference at the Kentucky Capitol on Wednesday morning the latest bourbon economic impact study was released, showing strong growth in the industry. There are now over 20,000 people whose paychecks come from Kentucky’s spirits industry. By 2020 that number could top 24,000.

Some of those jobs are the people who operate the visitors’ centers at the distilleries, which are a major tourism attraction for Kentucky.

In Lawrenceburg, the Four Roses and Wild Turkey distilleries are both part of the Kentucky Bourbon Trail and draw in tens of thousands of visitors each year. People from around the world travel to Lawrenceburg and other cities in Kentucky throughout the year to tour the Bourbon Trail and visit some or all of the 14 unique distilleries that are part of the trail.


For Lawrencenburg and Anderson County this means tens of thousands of visitors who may spend part of their time here shopping or eating at local stores and restaurants or spend the night at one the local lodging options.

And there is good news for the future – the report estimates the Kentucky bourbon industry could support almost 1,800 additional jobs through 2023, increasing the total payroll by almost $70 million. It’s a good time to work in and visit Kentucky’s bourbon distilleries!