The Super Bowl and the Transatlantic Relationship

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On Sunday, February 7th, life in the Unites States will briefly come to a halt. Streets will be vacated as people will gather in front of the television screens in homes, restaurants, and bars to watch the final of the 2015 National Football League (NFL) season, more commonly known as “The Super Bowl”. Of the more than 110 million people who generally watch the game in the U.S., many tune in for the actual game. But many are more interested in the spectacular half-time show while some are mainly interested in the new commercial campaigns during the breaks. This year, the two teams fighting for the title in the Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California (near San Francisco) are the Carolina Panthers and the Denver Broncos.

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The Super Bowl is a prime example of a truly American event with seemingly very little external influences. In the United States, football is the most popular professional sport, boasting the highest attendance of any sporting league in the world and is also the most popular sport in high school and college. The contrast between the popularity of football in the United States and the rest of the world is striking. In Europe, football is hardly played and watched at all. The NFL has attempted to become more international by, for example, sponsoring a European development league (NFL Europe (1991-2007)) and planning an occasional NFL game abroad as part of the NFL International Series, but with very little direct results.

related Article: The NFL’s Future in Europe 

Given that football is such a “typically American” sport, practiced and watched by Americans, it is striking to observe that European companies play such a major role in sponsoring and organizing the event off the field. This becomes obvious during the extremely popular commercial breaks where a 30 second advertisement can cost up to 5 million dollars. European automotive companies, such as BMW, Audi, Mini, and Mercedes, use this valuable airtime to persuade Americans to buy their products. Moreover, many of the companies that traditionally advertise during the Super Bowl – and which may seem as American as apple pie – have strong European ties. Some are even owned by European companies. Two examples are the Anheuser-Busch brewery known for beers such as Budweiser and Bud light, which was purchased by the Belgian-Brazilian brewery AB-InBev in 2008, and Weight Watchers that an investment fund representing European families purchased from Heinz in 1999.

A less obvious example of European presence during the Super Bowl is the half-time show: the British band Coldplay will headline this year. Last year, American viewers were mesmerized by a video projection during pop star Katy Perry’s performance. Eighty projectors changed the playing field into a virtual bending chessboard or a tropical island paradise. The technology that made this possible comes from the Belgian company Barco, which is active in more than 90 countries and employs more than 3,300 people worldwide.

 

Another example of a European involvement is German-based SAP, which will provide entertainment outside the stadium in “Super Bowl City”. The company has created an interactive game, in which a fan wearing a virtual reality headset becomes a quarterback in simulated game situations like avoiding getting sacked or throwing a game-winning touchdown pass. Fans can see how they fare against other competitors on a scoreboard.

Although the Super Bowl is typically American, it clearly demonstrates how a major event provides unique opportunities for companies on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean (and the rest of the world) to promote their assets in a variety of areas such as culture, technology, and trade. The same opportunities will present themselves later in 2016 on the European continent during the Champions’ League final on May 28 in Milan, where the Ford Motor Company had been the main sponsor for 21 years, and the UEFA European Cup Soccer in June and July in France. Some of UEFA’s official U.S. based sponsors are the hamburger restaurant MacDonalds and the soft drink company Coca Cola.

As opposed to the Super Bowl, where there has to be a winner, the opportunities created by these events can generate a “win” for all participants.

The USEU Press Team

United States remains committed to a comprehensive TTIP that will benefit SMEs

“T-TIP negotiations will also seek to open opportunities for SMEs in services, government procurement, intellectual property rights, and electronic commerce. As we look toward the 12th round of negotiations next month, I want to reiterate that the United States remains committed to a comprehensive transatlantic trade and investment partnership agreement that will benefit SMEs, and we are committed to finalizing the agreement under the Obama Administration.” (U.S. Ambassador to the EU Anthony Gardner)

Anthony Gardner, U.S. Ambassador to the European Union (USEU), spoke on how the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP) could affect Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) at the European Parliament on Tuesday January 26, 2016. He concluded his speech entitled “T-TIP – A Chance for SMEs” with this statement regarding the future of the T-TIP agreement to set the tone for the event and emphasize President Obama’s commitment to finishing the T-TIP agreement by the end of his administration.

Ambassador Gardner’s full speech at the European Parliament (Jan. 26, 2016)

This event, attended by some 20 Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) and approximately 50 representatives of the policy making and business community, highlighted the very real opportunities presented by T-TIP, to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) on both sides of the Atlantic. As a recent Commission report demonstrated, SMEs play a vital role in the EU’s economy. For example, in 2014 SMEs in the EU accounted for 71% of the 1.5 million net jobs created in the non-financial businesses sector and SMEs in the EU that export are growing their payrolls by 7 percent annually as compared to only 1 percent for those that focus exclusively on their domestic market.

European Commission: Annual Report on European SMEs 2014/2015: SMEs Start Hiring Again

Many of the speakers, including Member of the European Parliament Lara Comi (EPP) and Dr. Eoin Drea of the Martens Center, confirmed that if we want a successful implementation of T-TIP, SMEs will need to be part of the discussion. Many speakers and event attendees agreed that SMEs lie at the heart of what T-TIP is trying to achieve. The breakfast event started with poignant concrete remarks by MEP Iuliu Winkler, Vice-Chair of the INTA Committee and First Vice-President of SME Europe, who also acted as moderator. Maria Åsenius, Commissioner Malmström’s Head of Cabinet also explained that T-TIP negotiations and the finished agreement will have a dedicated chapter on how small stakeholders can contribute to trade policy development.

During the event, each speaker highlighted real-life stories of companies on both sides of the Atlantic that wish to or already engage in transatlantic trade, and hope to benefit, from a successful agreement. Ambassador Gardner and others stated that we cannot just discuss T-TIP in abstract numbers, facts, and figures. Successful implementation means being able to talk about specific examples and companies from both sides of the Atlantic. Various companies were used as examples, such as Integrays, a satellite telecommunications systems company based in Madrid, Revent a Swedish rack oven producer, Feuer Powertrain a German crankshaft company, and NuStep, an American cross-training exercise equipment company.

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(Source: Workman Garrett, Atlantic Council: The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership: Big Opportunities for Small Business, November 2014)

These stories were noteworthy because they produce a wide array of products, but they also move the discussion of T-TIP from the abstract to the very tangible. Each example noted obstacles to current transatlantic trade that these companies are facing, but also their expectations regarding T-TIP’s ability to help them compete in international trade. As Ambassador Gardner stated: “they put a human face to an acronym and convey – in ways far more compelling than government pronouncements – what we are trying to achieve in T-TIP.”

The day after this event highlighting the potential benefits of a T-TIP agreement for SMEs, the World Trade Institute also launched its own report that concluded that T-TIP would deliver a range of economic and social benefits to the EU.

World Trade Institute: T-TIP and the Member States (Jan 27, 2016)

The U.S. Mission to the EU (USEU) anticipates that the negotiators will continue to make significant progress during the next round of T-TIP negotiations in Brussels later this month.

the USEU Press Team

 

U.S. Ambassador to the EU Anthony Gardner looks back at 2015

By United States Ambassador to the European Union Anthony Luzzatto Gardner

2015 was an eventful year, which proved that the US-EU bond is holding firm despite the many challenges facing the US-EU partnership – both within Europe and beyond. This year, I have been struck by the continued relevance, perhaps as never before, of our common transatlantic values.

I feel very confident that the EU is the essential partner of the United States on nearly every major transatlantic issue and even on many global issues.

The EU and United States have stood firm against Russia’s misguided attempts to redraw the borders of Europe. We stand firm in our determination that Ukraine succeed as a democratic, stable and prosperous country. We agree that sanctions on Russia should only be eased once Minsk is fully implemented, and once Ukraine regains full control over its internationally recognized borders.

At Europol, the European Police Office, law enforcement and customs agencies from the 28 Member States of the European Union and 14 non-EU countries, including the United States, work side by side in task forces to restrict terrorist financing, combat smuggling of foreign terrorist fighters from conflict zones, and establish links between known and suspected terrorists.

Within an hour of the November 13 terrorist attacks in Paris, U.S. law enforcement agencies joined European investigators at the command center established at Europol. Within the following hours, days and weeks, U.S. law enforcement provided over 1000 leads to French and Belgian counterparts to further the investigation and disrupt potential future attacks.

Today, we are working more closely than ever before on security issues. For example, the U.S. European Command recently signed an administrative agreement with the EU Military Staff. We are also making good progress on an agreement which would enable U.S. and European defense forces to share common logistics and servicing requirements, when needed.

We have also provided over $4.5 billion in humanitarian assistance since the start of the Syrian crisis – more than any other single donor – to help address dire humanitarian conditions faced by displaced people in the region. We are actively looking at many ways we can be helpful to the EU in dealing with the challenges of migration flows.

T-TIP provides an opportunity to promote growth and job creation, as well as to extend our strategic influence during uncertain times. We must make a decision together: either lead on global trade or be left on the sidelines. We made important progress in 2015, especially with regard to tariffs and services. We have an opportunity to conclude a deal before the end of President Obama’s term.

Ambassador Gardner’s speech at Bucharest TTIP Conference, October 16, 2015

For the last two years, we have worked closely with the European Commission to strengthen the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework, with robust and transparent protection, including clear oversight by the Department of Commerce and strong enforcement by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission. In 2016, we will continue to work with the Commission to release an updated framework.

Ambassador Gardner’s speech at AmCham EU’s 3rd annual Digital Economy Conference, December 2, 2015

The historic signing of the climate agreement in Paris establishes for the first time an ambitious, durable climate regime that applies to all countries; is fair; focuses both on reducing greenhouse gas emissions and building resilience; and includes strong accountability measures.

Looking forward to 2016, we will continue to work closely with our friends and partners at the EU, and to reinforce the special transatlantic bond. From me and all of us at the US Mission to the EU, I would like to wish you a Happy Holiday season!

A Ten-Week Immersion in Public Affairs at the United States Mission to the European Union

Madeline Bronstein was an intern at the Public Affairs Section at the United States Mission to the European Union

As a Public Affairs intern with the United States Mission to the EU (USEU), I had the opportunity to work on a variety of projects, issues, and interests during my ten weeks working in Brussels. The office I worked for, Public Affairs (PA), directs the communications efforts for USEU, including press and media, programs and events, and international exchanges. What distinguishes Public Affairs from other sections within an embassy or U.S. foreign mission is that it directly reaches out to the public-in this case the citizens of the European Union—instead of primarily focusing on government-to-government relations. At USEU, the target audience is not as straight forward as in a traditional embassy. USEU has very little direct contact with the population in the member states. Instead, the mission reaches out to journalists, researchers, activists, and public servants who represent the European constituency in Brussels.

As a PA intern, I worked on issues that spanned across the mission’s departments (political, economic, trade, etc.) to plan events and media initiatives. The experience taught me more about the Foreign Service, public diplomacy, the strength of the US-EU relationship, and the challenges it faces over a broad range of global issues. USEU plays a key role in defending U.S. interests on world issues, including the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations, climate change, migration, and others. The mission works to give the United States a voice in Europe through interviews, press releases, events, exchanges, and other means of engaging Europe in a dialogue on how we can best work together to highlight our strengths, rather than focus on our differences.

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USEU Intern Madeline Bronstein introducing U.S. Ambassador the EU, Anthony Gardner to a group of EU trainees

The Public Affairs press section organizes media opportunities for USEU diplomats and visiting officials, including press conferences, interviews, and briefings, and informs the media through press releases. It also runs the mission’s social media programs. Working with press and social media at USEU was an extremely interesting experience, as media can involve almost all areas of the mission. I helped organize interviews and briefings for European media, monitored news for a daily USEU newswire distribution, and drafted social media content for events and major development. As a millennial, my generation is extremely active on social media (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, etc.) and it was interesting to see how these rapidly evolving tools are used in diplomacy to reach out and provide a new way for public audiences to gain insight into the positions and activities of government offices. Social media is easily accessible for most people-it’s free to use, simple to navigate, and often emphasizes brief, clear concise messages. This makes it a great tool for informing audiences that it otherwise might not be able to reach.

The other key component of my internship at USEU was working with the Programs and Exchanges team. Public Affairs organizes events both within the mission and with external organizations (think tanks, NGOs etc.), bringing in U.S. speakers and experts to share an American perspective with European audiences. Organizing as well as attending these events demonstrated instantly to me just how powerful these events can be as a public diplomacy tool. It was interesting to hear the thoughts and questions Europeans had for the American diplomats and experts that spoke. Getting out of the office and giving the United States Mission to the EU a face to the European community can play an important role in establishing mutual respect and understanding, and I was very impressed by the impact USEU’s programs and events can have. Perhaps the speakers might not always convince the audience that the U.S. position is the correct one, but they can also provide people with a more sophisticated understanding of the U.S. position, which can be equally important.

A highlight during my internship was putting together a series of morning briefings at the mission for EU trainees, or stagiaires. Engaging with stagiaires is an important initiative for PA, as the trainees represent potential new EU leaders and policy-makers, and emphasizing the transatlantic relationship as well as inviting them to hear a U.S. perspective can strengthen current and future relationships between USEU and the European institutions.

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EU Stagiairs Briefing on Sanctions with USEU Economic Officer, Amy Roth

I organized three of these briefings, which culminated in a half-day program on the broader U.S.-EU relationship. The briefings each focused on a different topic pertaining to transatlantic relations, including humanitarian aid and development, sanctions, migration, and the Fulbright-Schuman exchange program. Working with USEU officials, including members of the political and economic sections, USAID, and U.S. Ambassador to the EU Anthony Gardner, as well as meeting and hearing from EU stagiaires on a range of current global challenges was both fun and a great experience- I worked on the events from their beginning stages through to their end. The dialogues that came out of these morning briefings were interesting, open-minded, and candid. I enjoyed being a part of the effort to increase understanding and share perspectives between Americans and young professionals working in EU affairs.

Working with both the press and events sides of USEU/PA was not only a good opportunity for me to diversify my projects, but gave me valuable perspective on how different public diplomacy tools work together to achieve goals. The Public Affairs department is ultimately a team, utilizing a variety of channels to communicate US perspectives and increase understanding between USEU and Europe. Programs and events have exponentially more reach and impact when accompanied by social media coverage, and local press and media are much more likely to accurately understand US positions if Americans are given a chance to share thoughts and engage with Europeans through events. Traditional and social media, events, and programs also go hand in hand as the reach of important news stories and events can be exponentially increased through social media and journalists can rely on events and social media as a source of information and inspiration.

I’ve been extremely fortunate to have the opportunity to live and work in such a dynamic city during interesting times. When I arrived in mid-September of 2015, the European Union and the transatlantic relationship were facing unique challenges like the heart of the migration crisis, the lead-up to historic UN climate conference COP 21, the ongoing TTIP negotiations, and the ever-evolving situation in Ukraine. These issues, as well as many others, have shifted and morphed throughout my time with USEU, and it was extremely interesting to be in Europe during a challenging and formative time in the EU’s history.

I chose to come to Brussels to work with USEU because I was, and am now even more so, interested in the relationship and partnership between the United States and Europe. Working with the Public Affairs office and USEU has helped shape the way I think about Europe, the transatlantic relationship, and American diplomacy, and I could not have asked for a better way to learn about our partners across the Atlantic.

International Exchange Programs: Strengthening Transatlantic Relations

By Matteo Quattrocchi, Programs and Exchanges Assistant, Department of Public Affairs, U.S. Mission to the European Union.

In 2010, right after graduating from LUISS University in Rome, I decided that I wanted to study in the United States. I based my decision on the fact that I wanted to live in the U.S. and that I thought a U.S. degree would give me a competitive advantage while looking for a job. While my degree definitely helped in the job market, it was the experience of living abroad, in direct contact with a foreign culture that changed entirely my perspective on American society and the American people. All the time I had spent studying American Law and History before moving to Washington did not come close to the experience of being an international student in the U.S. Issues I had learned of in books, from the Bill of Rights to the U.S. National Security structure, suddenly became a living thing I was part of. Studying in an American university proved to be an incredibly challenging and fulfilling experience. Moreover, personal connections with fellow American students gave me a deeper understanding of U.S. society, with its fundamental values and freedoms, and the intrinsic contradictions of the world oldest democracy. When I eventually moved back to Europe, I realized my sensitivity towards a foreign culture had fundamentally changed. At the same time those I came in contact with had learned more about my home country; their sensitivities also fundamentally changed. Overall, I feel this increased cultural awareness also transferred to my openness to understanding other cultures and nationalities.

Educational exchanges have always been at the center of the growth of culture, fostering global integration in times of turmoil as in times of peace. The cornerstone of any educational system is the free exchange of ideas among academics, students and society at large. It is the possibility for students and teachers to travel and visit foreign learning institutions, to broaden their horizons, and bring back to their home countries new perspectives, that allows cultures to develop.

The Fulbright program, established in 1946, has been the most successful exchange to date, and has become a fundamental stepping stone for generations of students and academics traveling the world. The success of the Fulbright Program has led the way for countless similar exchanges, none more renowned than the Erasmus Program, established in 1987 and today a fundamental part of the European experience for millions of European citizens.

What we now call the Fulbright-Schuman Program started as a small exchange program between the United States and the European Communities in 1990.  22977623181_a8ba225293_oIt supported the study of transatlantic issues, fostering a new generation of American and European thinkers. This year we celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Fulbright-Schuman Program, with more than 300 American and European citizens benefitting from the program since 1990 and making fundamental contributions to strengthening U.S.-EU relations.

As Fulbright-Schuman moves to confirm its success for the years to come, it also strives to expand its support to forward thinking individuals across the United States and Europe. In October, U.S Ambassador to the EU, Anthony Luzzatto Gardner announced the creation of the new Fulbright-Schuman Innovation Grants to support research at the intersection of technology and policy.

Grantees will focus their work on how to conciliate technological advancements with existing regulatory and policy frameworks. For the first time in the history of Fulbright-Schuman, the U.S. Mission to the EU is looking to the private sector for support in this exciting new initiative. As the success of the Fulbright and Erasmus programs proves, an investment in educational exchanges is the safest investment in the future of U.S.-EU relations.

This month, from November 16th to November 20th, celebrate International Education Week, now in its 15th edition. The Fulbright Program is but part of the larger effort by the U.S. Government to bring international students to the United States. Each year, nearly 975,000 international students (64,000 from the EU) travel across the country to discover the American way of life and of learning. They bring back to their home countries shared values and a new understanding of the United States. At the same time, more than 157,000 U.S. students chose to study in the EU each year, experiencing the cultures, languages, and traditions that make the EU great.

Educational exchanges constitute a fundamental part of the Department of State’s outreach programs. They allow for a better understanding with partner countries, and to mitigate tensions with other. They have undoubtedly served as an indispensable instrument for the policy priorities of the U.S. Mission to the EU.

Nevertheless, exchanges are not just a public diplomacy tool. Over the years, they have bridged what often seemed unsurmountable differences. Educational exchanges contribute every day in connecting students from across the world.  As I learned during my year in Washington, DC, these exchanges allow not only for the sharing of ideas and research, but especially that cultures and traditions become part of a personal growth experience for communities in the U.S. and abroad.

USAID Hosted Young EU Professionals to Discuss Development and Humanitarian Issues

by Marc Ellingstad, USAID Counselor of Mission for International Development at the U.S. Mission to the European Union and Lev Turner, USAID Advisor for Food Security and Humanitarian Assistance at the U.S. Mission to the European Union

Collectively, the EU (along with its member states) and the U.S. provide about 80% of official development assistance, thus coordination for the benefit of our development partners is critical. The close relationships between USAID and European Union institutions around the world allow us to more effectively coordinate policies and programs, both at HQ level and on the ground. Whether we are addressing longer-term development strategies or emergency situations such as natural disasters, the goal is to provide more effective and efficient assistance. There is always room for improvement, and together with our EU colleagues, we are exploring ways to expand joint programming, which can reduce overhead costs and foster common development platforms in-country. When we face challenges that are insurmountable with funding alone, we work to identity opportunities to strengthen the promotion of our shared values around dignity, humanitarian access, and protection through joint messaging and advocacy.

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Lev Turner and Marc Ellingstad together with a group of EU Young Professionals, November 4th, 2015.

In early November, we hosted a very dynamic and engaged group of young EU professionals to discuss development and humanitarian issues. Beginning with a brief introduction to the United States Agency for International Development, we noted that our historic roots are in Europe with the Marshall Plan and John F. Kennedy formally constituted the Agency in 1961. We described the relatively decentralized way that USAID works, the importance we place on country-level expertise and ownership, and the very vital role that our local colleagues play in our operations around the world.   Turning to how we work, we noted USAID is committed to strengthening local ownership and capacities. One of the many ways we strive towards that goal is by increasingly implementing our programming directly with local partners. Like our development colleagues in the EU Commission, it is important for us to approach our work in country as cooperative efforts with partners.

During our exchange with our guests, we were quite impressed by their knowledge and insightful questions. Given the numbers of refugees currently arriving in the European Union every day, we were not surprised that many of the questions concerned migration and how policymakers and development professionals can best address root causes. We discussed the challenges faced by Syrian refugees in meeting their basic humanitarian needs, and the importance of providing higher levels of humanitarian assistance for refugees and internally displaced persons in the region, including educational opportunities for affected children. We also discussed migration patterns in the Americas, and the unique security and development challenges facing Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador. We agreed on the need to be disciplined and committed to development and humanitarian financing – it is better to help prevent a crisis than respond to one.

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Lev Turner explaining the system of debit cards, given to refugees.

Development and humanitarian issues span the entire globe, and our brief event hardly provided us with enough time to scratch the surface on important topics raised by our counterparts, such as the role of technology and connectivity in development, the importance of education, challenges facing development agencies working in hostile environments, the intersection between trade and development and the role of free-trade agreements, how we approach questions of food security, the role of China as a donor in Africa, and the role that remittances play. Still, Lev and I both enjoyed the depth of thinking and analysis that formed our conversation. The energy and thoughtfulness that came across from our young European colleagues was indeed inspiring.

Whiskey Tasting Seminar Highlights the Quality and Diversity of American Whiskeys


By Karisha Kuypers, Agricultural Attache, Foreign Agricultural Service (USDA), U.S. Mission to the European Union

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) is tasked with promoting exports of U.S. agricultural products overseas. We promote U.S. agriculture in many ways but much of our work involves supporting U.S. agricultural cooperator groups, which are organizations that offer marketing assistance to U.S. exporters, sponsor trade missions, and help farmers and ranchers identify international market opportunities. We recently worked with one such organization, the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS), hosting an event to highlight the quality and diversity of a great American product – American whiskeys.

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Ambassador Anthony Gardner speaking at the Whiskey Tasting Seminar

On September 30, the U.S. Mission to the European Union (USEU) and the U.S. Mission to the Kingdom of Belgium co-hosted a whiskey tasting seminar sponsored by DISCUS to promote and educate guests about fine U.S. whiskeys and spirits. The tasting seminar was led by a well-known American mixologist from New York City, Christy Pope. Ms. Pope
discussed the cultural history of distilled spirits in the United States and explained the differences between American whiskeys and other whiskeys around the world.  She then led guests through a formal tasting of six whiskeys and demonstrated how to make two kinds of specialty cocktails with American whiskey. After the presentation, guests had the opportunity to try a variety of small-batch whiskeys and spirits from craft distilleries from all around the United States. Almost 80 guests attended the tasting, including local spirits importers, distributors, and retail buyers, in addition to officials from EU institutions and European agricultural associations. European journalists who cover lifestyles, food, and wine, as well as political and business journalists, also participated.

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Christy Pope’s presentation at the Whiskey Tasting Seminar

Whiskey has a long history in the United States and in many ways forms an important part of American culture. American whiskeys are distinct from whiskeys made in other countries – it must contain at least 51 percent of corn (for bourbon) or rye (for rye whiskey) and adhere to a number of other criteria to be labeled an “American Whiskey.”

The countries of the European Union are some of the biggest export markets for U.S. spirits. One-half of U.S. exports of spirits now go to the EU and Europe is the largest and still fastest growing market for U.S. spirits. The United States exported almost $750 million of distilled spirits to the EU in 2014, with the United Kingdom ($178 million), Germany ($143 million), and France ($109 million) as the EU’s largest importers of U.S. spirits. Belgium is the ninth largest importer of U.S. spirits in the EU, bringing in $19.9 million in 2014.American Whiskeys more than 80 percent of the spirits exported to the EU are Bourbons and Tennessee whiskeys, Europe is obviously already familiar with some of the more famous American whiskeys. However, what is not always well known is the incredible diversity of distilleries in the United States that are making high-quality American whiskey and other spirits. In 2013, there were over 600 craft distilleries making whiskeys and spirits in the United States. These distilleries range from big internationally known names like Jim Bean and Jack Daniels to craft distilleries making small batches of artisanal whiskeys and spirits.
The whiskey seminar was a great opportunity to familiarize the European market with high-quality U.S. whiskeys. For those who were already aware of these products, it was a chance to learn more about them. For all those attended, we hope that the event will not be the last time that they enjoy a fine American whiskey.