LAWRENCEBURG, KY— Wild Turkey® is spreading its wings. The honorable Governor of Kentucky, Steve Beshear, joined famed Wild Turkey Master Distiller Jimmy Russell and executives from brand owner Gruppo Campari at a ceremony today in Lawrenceburg to unveil the state’s first major distillery expansion in decades. Representing a potential boon for the local economy and the tourism industry, the new $50 million distillery will allow Wild Turkey to double its production to meet the growing global demand for its iconic Bourbon and rye whiskies.
“The Wild Turkey Distillery has a distinguished history with the Commonwealth and an even brighter future with the announcement of its recent expansion plans,” Gov. Beshear said. “This company displays its Kentucky roots proudly, and its investment in Kentucky has reaped great success and respect worldwide. This expansion will not only bring the potential of more jobs to our Kentucky families but will also bring continued stability and longevity to this remarkable business.”
The new 134,000 square foot facility expansion makes Wild Turkey not only one of the biggest whiskey distilleries in Kentucky, but in all of North America. It is capable of producing up to 11 million proof gallons of liquid annually, up from the 5 million proof gallons of the previous distillery which was first put into operation back in 1869.
“I was surprised to learn that no major distillery expansion had occurred in Kentucky for several decades,” said Bob Kunze-Concewitz, CEO of Gruppo Campari. “This project reflects the confidence we have in the growth prospects of the iconic Wild Turkey family of brands. We are pleased our distillery expansion will not only be able to meet the increased demand for this great product, but that it will also bring potential economic benefits to the people of the area and the Commonwealth of Kentucky.”
Wild Turkey Bourbon is a leading premium bourbon is US, Australia and Japan. Gruppo Campari, which acquired the Wild Turkey business in 2009, intends to develop the family of brands in its international distribution network.
“This expansion celebrates every individual who has ever worked at our distillery and helped us to craft Wild Turkey Bourbon,” said Master Distiller Jimmy Russell, the Bourbon legend with 57 years of experience, who played an active role in the planning of the facility. “This fine new home of ours means that we’ll continue to raise the profile of Bourbon, creating more of the Wild Turkey that you know and love, and bringing this little piece of Kentucky to more people around the world.”
The expansion of the Wild Turkey distillery is just one piece of news coming out of Bourbon Country this month for the brand. Wild Turkey also recently announced the birth of Wild Turkey 81 in the US – a new, mixable Bourbon from Jimmy’s son, Associate Distiller and fellow Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Famer Eddie Russell. In addition, the entire Wild Turkey line in the US will get a packaging refresh as well as a new marketing campaign called “Give ’em the Bird,” which folks can now see at www.facebook.com/wildturkey. Also, in Australia, the brand is getting a packaging upgrade, new advertising and a new premium brand added to its ready-to-drink product line.
The new distillery features multiple upgrades, including improved emissions controls, water recycling and a renewable fuel system. The first aged Wild Turkey from the new distillery will be available to whiskey fans in 2016. The brands produced at the Wild Turkey distillery include the iconic Wild Turkey 101, Wild Turkey 81, Wild Turkey Rye, Rare Breed®, Kentucky Spirit®, Russell’s Reserve®, and American Honey®. Wild Turkey is distributed in the US by Skyy Spirits.
More than 200 people were in attendance to raise a glass to Wild Turkey’s milestone including Governor Beshear; Lawrenceburg Mayor Edwinna Baker; Gruppo Campari’s Chairman, Luca Garavoglia, and CEO, Bob Kunze-Concewitz; Skyy Spirits CEO and Chairman, Gerry Ruvo; and many other industry partners.
For further information on Wild Turkey history visit: http://www.camparigroup.com/en/press_media/history_communication/wild_turkey_html.jsp
About Skyy Spirits, LLC
The eighth-largest spirits company in the US, Skyy Spirits, LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Davide Campari-Milano S.p.A. (Reuters CPRI.MI – Bloomberg CPR IM), together with its affiliates Gruppo Campari. Launched in 1992 with the introduction of its flagship brand, SKYY® Vodka, Skyy Spirits has grown exponentially, building a portfolio unrivaled in its quality, innovation and style, making it a top choice among distributors, retailers and consumers. Skyy Spirits manages Gruppo Campari’s portfolio in the US with such leading brands as SKYY® Vodka, SKYY90®, All Natural SKYY Infusions®, Campari®, Wild Turkey® Straight Kentucky Bourbon, American Honey®, Russell’s Reserve®, Glen Grant® Single Malt Scotch Whisky, Cabo Wabo® Tequila, EspolÃ³n® Tequila, Ouzo 12®, X-Rated® Fusion Liqueur®, Frangelico®, Carolans Irish Cream®, Irish Mist® Liqueur and Jean-Marc XO Vodka®. Skyy Spirits is also the exclusive US distributor of Cutty Sark® Scotch Whisky, The Glenrothes® Single Malt Scotch Whisky, Bowmore® Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky, Auchentoshan® Lowland Single Malt Scotch Whisky, Glen Garioch® Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky, Flor de CaÃ±a® Rum, Midori® Melon Liqueur, Hibiki® Whisky and The Yamazaki® Single Malt Whisky.
Skyy Spirits was founded and is headquartered in San Francisco, California. More information on the company can be found at www.skyyspirits.com, www.facebook.com/skyyspirits, Twitter: @SkyySpirits and www.camparigroup.com. Please enjoy Skyy Spirits brands responsibly and in moderation.
About Gruppo Campari
Davide Campari-Milano S.p.A., together with its affiliates (“Gruppo Campari”), is a major player in the global beverage sector, trading in over 190 nations around the world with a leading position in the Italian and Brazilian markets and a strong presence in the USA and Continental Europe. The Group has an extensive portfolio that spans three business segments: spirits, wines and soft drinks. In the spirits segment its internationally renowned brands, such as Campari, Carolans, SKYY Vodka and Wild Turkey stand out. It also has leading regional brands including Aperol, Cabo Wabo, Camparisoda, Cynar, Frangelico, Glen Grant, Ouzo 12, X-Rated Fusion Liqueur, Zedda Piras and the local Brazilian brands Dreher, Old Eight and Drury’s. Its wine segment boasts the global brand Cinzano, as well as important regional brands including Liebfraumilch, Mondoro, Odessa, Riccadonna, Sella&Mosca and Teruzzi&Puthod. The soft drinks segment comprises the non-alcoholic aperitif Crodino and Lemonsoda as well as its respective line extension dominating the Italian market. The Group employs over 2,200 people. The shares of the parent company, Davide Campari-Milano S.p.A. (Reuters CPRI.MI – Bloomberg CPR IM), are listed on the Italian Stock Exchange. www.camparigroup.com