Ireland’s spirits exports are currently experiencing rapid growth despite one of the worst global recessions ever encountered.
Jun 7 2012
A new report, The Irish Spirits Industry, from the Irish Spirits Association, shows that Irish spirits continue to thrive on international markets, particularly in emerging economies such as China and India.
The Irish spirits industry produces over 15.5 million nine-litre cases and employs an estimated 14,700 people throughout the manufacturing, supply, distribution, hospitality and retail areas.
It has an value-added economic contribution to the Irish economy of approximately €568 million every year.
Over 90 per cent of Irish spirits products produced in this country are exported overseas. Willie McCarter, Chair of the Irish Spirits Association, said that spirits drink exports are thanks to innovation in the sector and the popularity of Irish Whiskey globally. Irish spirit manufacturers have succeeded in creating iconic, high value global brands which are recognised around the world, he said, adding that prospects for the Irish spirits sector remain strong, given the potential for additional sales in major emerging markets.
“While the domestic market for Irish spirits remains challenging, we remain an important part of the wider drinks industry,” commented Willie McCarter, “Through direct purchases of raw materials and equipment as well as expenditure in the supply sectors (eg engineering, marketing and communication agencies) and the indirect economic impact on the hospitality and retail sector, we contribute over half-a-billion €uro to the overall economy.
“However, exports are key to the success of the spirits industry. Irish whiskeys and cream liqueurs are among our leading international brands, appearing in over 100 countries throughout the world. A significant amount of investment has been made by the companies involved in the sector and the challenge is to continue to build on this success and identify new target markets.
“As Chairman of the ISA I will continue to work with Government, relevant state agencies and other groups to build on our work to date and help create export-led economic recovery at home.”
The Irish Spirits Association was established in 1997 to promote the interests of the Irish spirits industry in a national and international context. The ISA is an effective voice among national and EU policymakers and is a sector association within the Alcohol Beverage Federation of Ireland.