Wine and Spirits Wholesalers in Illinois Employ More than 3,500 Americans Earning $332 million in Wages, New Data Shows

Jul 11, 2019
Industry generates $1.68 billion in Illinois state tax revenue each year; wholesalers increased job growth by 43 percent since 2016

Family-owned wine and spirits wholesalers in Illinois deliver wine and spirits from every corner of the world to local restaurants, bars and stores— and are a major economic engine in the state, according to a new study. Wholesalers in Illinois employ more than 3,500 employees who earn $332 million in wages each year as part of an industry that generates $1.68 billion in Illinois state tax revenue annually. Since 2016, wholesaler jobs in Illinois have increased 43 percent and collective wages paid have increased by more than $94 million.


“Illinois’ wine and spirits distributors are experiencing a very exciting time with overall growth and product innovation, the creation of good paying jobs, meeting consumer demand with unparalleled choice, and conducting business in a safe and transparent manner,” said Danny Wirtz, Vice Chairman of Breakthru Beverage Group and Vice Chairman of WSWA Executive Committee.


Distributors in the three-tier system efficiently move alcoholic beverage products from producer to consumer, and help keep the market safe and accountable, protecting consumers and non-consumers alike. Responsible distribution practices save Illinois' government money by accurately and efficiently collecting and remitting $232.05 million in state excise taxes.


“Wine and spirits distributors in Illinois are an important part of the state’s economy,” said Karin Matura, Executive Director of Wine & Spirits Distributors of Illinois. “From the jobs these family-owned businesses create, to the taxes they help account for and collect, to the safeguard they provide against counterfeit alcohol, wholesalers are invaluable to the market.”


To search Illinois wine and spirits wholesaler data by state, congressional district, state senate district, or state house district, click here. WSWA’s industry economic impact analysis and ongoing studies are prepared by John Dunham & Associates based in Brooklyn, N.Y.


WSWA is the national trade association representing the wholesale tier of the wine and spirits industry, dedicated to advancing the interests and independence of wholesalers, distributors and brokers of wine and spirits. Founded in 1943, WSWA has more than 370 member companies in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, and its members distribute more than 80 percent of all wine and spirits sold at wholesale in the U.S.