PHOTO BY AMANDA JOY CHRISTENSEN
American Craft Distillers Association’s Inaugural Convention ORGANIZER ATTENDEES: 510 EXHIBITORS: 74 companies who provide products
and services targeted to the spirits industry.
WHAT WERE THE BEST RECEIVED CLASSES, AND WORKSHOPS? Our Town Hall style discussions
where filled to capacity with standing room only. Those on Federal Excise Tax reduction efforts and “What is Craft” were the most engaging. They confirmed that our owner-members value live interaction where all facts and opinions can be heard, weighed and debated so that common ground and understand can be reached. WHAT WAS THE PRIMARY GOAL GOING INTO THIS YEAR’S EVENT? Being our inaugural convention, it was
extremely important to set the tone as a not-forprofit trade association whose purpose is to serve the needs of its member-base (…and industry) as it relates to helping them successfully evolve their businesses.
WHAT CAN BE IMPROVED ON? We are very pleased with the turnout and feedback received. With our newly elected board that consists of a varied cross-section of respected and experienced American craft spirits producers from varying functional backgrounds our membership can be assured we will always be striving to improve in all facets of our events – and organization as a whole.
WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE DONE DIFFERENTLY NEXT YEAR? ACDA is unique in the expertise it
brings together – the supplier sponsors and founding distillers have a wealth of knowledge about the industry. The conference could serve as a springboard to leverage our shared expertise all year long through partnerships, educational opportunities and other things. It would be great to see more of an effort to continue the momentum WHAT CAN WE EXPECT TO SEE IN 2015? A “Texas Sized” and interaction throughout the year. event, including a consumer event that will provide a platform for our craft producers to get their ARE YOU GOING AGAIN IN 2015? Yes, we’re looking products in one of the hottest craft spirits markets forward to participating again next year as a in America…Austin, TX. The 2015 program founding sponsor. will feature broader and deeper educational tracts, more town hall discussions and an even ATTENDEE: JASON BARRETT – more inclusive and rigorous spirits competition.
BLACK BUTTON DISTILLING
HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE AT ACDA? It was a great first showing of what an industry tradeshow can HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE AT THE EVENT? It be. It had important, high level conversations that showed promise as a valuable opportunity for our industry needs to have as we develop and grow. experienced distillers and suppliers to strengthen relationships, share knowledge, and continue to HOW MANY CONVENTIONS DID YOU ATTEND THIS YEAR? WHO IS THE TARGET MARKET FOR THIS EVENT? Just ACDA in Denver Established craft spirits producers are our primary build on the growth of the craft spirits industry. target audience. New craft spirits producers and WHO DO YOU THINK GETS THE MOST VALUE OUT OF WHERE THERE ANY CLASSES OR PANELS THAT REALLY industry professionals are our secondary target. A SHOW LIKE THIS? It’s especially valuable for STOOD OUT FOR YOU? The discussion on safety and suppliers to the craft spirits industry such as the definition of craft were both top notch. I took a WHO GETS THE MOST VALUE FROM ATTENDING? Craft ourselves. They provide unique opportunities for lot away from both of those meetings. spirits producers and industry professionals who us to talk one-on-one with distillers, listen to their WHAT WAS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING YOU GOT OUT want to learn from other experienced industry needs, and learn about their business. . OF THE EVENT? Connecting with other industry producers and professionals on a wide range of business critical topics. WHAT ASPECT OF THE EVENT DID YOU ENJOY THE MOST? professionals and suppliers. WHAT WAS THE BIGGEST SUCCESS OF THE EVENT? We have enjoyed talking to and working with many WHO DO YOU THINK GETS THE MOST VALUE OUT OF A SHOW Members and industry professionals showed up in people in the very early stages of starting up their LIKE THIS? Experienced distillers looking to grow great numbers, they engaged, actively participated distilleries. At ACDA, it was rewarding to see many their business. This is certainly not 101 level info. and left with a valuable blend of new information, of those folks who have established themselves ANY SUGGESTIONS FOR THE EVENT NEXT YEAR? I would confirmation and evolved opinions and outlooks. in market as licensed DSPs. Seeing their brands like to see the schedule better communicated and The consumer tasting, DSTILL, put on in conjunction come alive and knowing that we played a part in maybe a few more courses covering bigger issues with the Colorado Distillers Association, was supporting their growth is rewarding and helps to as they relate to our industry. a huge hit with consumers and attendees alike. reinforce the sense of community that makes the industry unique.