What to Look for When Choosing a Spirits Distributor

Old Fashioned Cocktail On A Coaster

With the 21st amendment to the United States Constitution in 1933, Prohibition was repealed across the nation. At that point, the federal government established the three-tier system, whereby spirits suppliers are required to use a distributor to get their product to consumers. The three-tier system still exists to this day, and we’re happy to offer helpful tips on choosing a spirits distributor that fits your brand.

Knowledge of the Laws

Alcohol laws vary from state to state, and having a local distributor is beneficial, as they are familiar with a specific state’s laws or the laws for states in an entire region. This knowledge can be passed on to the producer, so they can adhere to ordinances to get their product to the marketplace.

States also operate as Open or Control states. Open states allow anyone with a valid license to distribute alcohol as they please. Control states — like Oregon — only permit the state and authorized agents to distribute alcohol.

Size of the Distributor

How large is your prospective distributor? Generally, larger distributors will be capable of getting your brand in front of more eyes. As the largest distributor of spirits in the northwest, Columbia Distributing reaches more retailers, so your product is available to more consumers on a daily basis.

We are proud to carry more than 250 alcoholic brands, and we have also been in business since 1935, so we know a thing or two about the distribution industry. Our team has the knowledge and energy to help your brand grow.

Brands They Carry

Wondering if your chosen distributor will carry your brand? Your chances go up if you ask. If you’ve been talking to a rep, just ask them flat out if your brand will fit in with the others at the distributor.

Retailers/Venues They Serve

You have a target clientele and know what customers are looking for your brand. Ask the distributor what retailers or venues they serve. This will give you an idea of the demographics and audience for your product, so you can narrow down your distributor choices.

Contact us to learn more about how Columbia Distributing can help your brand go to the top shelf.