Booze tax leaves consumers stout of pocket

As the weekend approaches, the Support Your Local campaign has tallied up how much tax, on average, you’ll be paying on a pint at your local, with the latest figures revealing that 30% of the price of a pint now goes straight to the Exchequer.

Ireland is now the most expensive country in the world in which to buy alcohol, with beer excise up by a staggering 44% since 2012.

The Support Your Local campaign, backed by publicans, restaurants, hotels, independent off-licences and drinks suppliers, has said that an excise reversal on alcohol would help create jobs. Last week British MP Greg Mulholland, who runs the ‘Save the Pub’ group in the UK told Irish TDs at the Oireachtas Jobs Committee that a beer duty cut in the UK had created 26,000 jobs.

According to Support Your Local’s Campaign Manager Bart Storan, “In less than 12 months (between December 2012 and October 2013) the Irish government increased:

  • excise on beer by 44%
  • excise on spirits by 37%
  • excise on wine by 62%


“We’re calling on the government to reverse excise on alcohol in the next Budget. Excise Duty is a tax that we can no longer afford – a tax on the hard-pressed Irish consumers. If you’re going to facilitate growth in this sector and get people back in the pub, the Government needs to reverse this tax.

“In Ireland, the drinks and hospitality industry employs 92,000 people in every corner of the island, buys €1.1 billion worth of Irish inputs and offers a unique hospitality experience, renowned internationally, in the pubs of Ireland.”

The website Publin offers consumers a chance to plan their night out based around the price and quality of Dublin pubs. Publin’s founder John Geraghty, added, “Since 2011, when the website launched, the average price of a pint in a bar has increased by €0.36, with 78% of this increase going straight to the Exchequer. Beer tax is 56% lower in Germany, accounting for €0.79 on the average pint of beer.

”While many Dublin pubs are offering fantastic deals, introducing high quality food offerings and selling new products, on average we’ve seen the price of a pint go up consistently over the last few years because of tax.”

Sign Up for Drinks Industry Ireland

Get a free weekly update on Drinks Industry trade news, direct to your inbox. Sign up now, it's free