Wholesaler Shot4

December 1933

21st Amendment Ratified, Prohibition Ended


December 5, 2017 marks 84 years since the United States ratified the 21st Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and paved the way for the modern three-tier beverage alcohol system.

By the Numbers: The Wine and Spirits Industry

American family-owned wine and spirits wholesalers are the local marketing and logistic experts in every state and every Congressional district. Members of the Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America deliver the widest variety of beverage alcohol products anywhere in the world in a manner that is safe, transparent, well-regulated, and efficiently taxed.
Wholesalers are vital contributors to local economies, employing more than 74,000 Americans at 3,000 locations nationwide. These employees earn $6.5 billion in wages annually.
Wholesalers account for nearly 74,000 jobs paying $6.5 billion in wages. 1.5 million people in the United States depend on the production, distribution, and sale of wine and spirits products for their livelihood. This is equal to almost 1% of the country’s working population.
These are real people with real jobs, ranging from vintners, to importers, to truck drivers, to the wait staff in bars and restaurants throughout the country.
The wine and spirits industry is a major contributor. The federal government received a total of $6.54 billion in excise taxes, and $23.82 billion in business-related taxes from beverage alcohol products. This does not include customs duties paid on imported products. 
State and local governments received $37.7 billion in taxes from the wine and spirits industry.
More than 70,000 manufacturing jobs in the United States are supported by the industry.
In addition to those working in the three tiers of the wine and spirits industry, a broad range of workers including those in banking, construction, packaging and agriculture supply the industry with goods and services.