New tariffs hit imported European liquor

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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - United States officials have recently approved $7.5 billion in tariffs on European Union goods, including certain alcohol products. Scotch and French wines are among the liquors hit by the new duties.

Top shelf Scotch could take a hit from new tariffs.

Smith's Liquor Galley co-owner Kathy Smith says the market instability is annoying but it shouldn't hurt too much. She says Scotch is a growing part of their business and most people willing to spend $200 on a bottle probably won't mind an extra six or seven.

She says consumers tend to notice more when cheaper products go up.

"It might deter some people purchasing Scotch in that $40 to $60 range," Smith said. "Right now Scotch is a hot commodity, so I don't see it as a huge deterrent, but yeah it affects the pockets of the consumer."

For now, prices have not changed because of the tariffs, but Smith says some of her distributors say the tariffs could drive the price up in the near future.

Smith says competition in other markets - particular Asian markets - is a bigger factor driving up the price of Scotch.

The tariffs take effect Oct. 18.

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