Fáilte Ireland and VFI ‘raise the bar’

The VFI has joined forces with Fáilte Ireland to launch Fáilte Ireland’s National Pub Accreditation scheme, allowing Ireland’s pubs and licensed premises to benefit from a new quality-based approval system.

The Irish pub has long been recognised as one of the most popular tourist attractions and it is the vision of both Fáilte Ireland and the VFI to meet and exceed the expectations of consumers through the introduction of the Pub Accreditation scheme.

Launched in Matt the Millers Pub in Kilkenny City, the Pub Accreditation scheme entitled ‘Raising the Bar’ will ensure that quality pubs are recognised and promoted at home and abroad.

The approval system is based on pubs meeting a set of national minimum requirements. It’s based on the typical ‘customer journey’ and helps ensure high standards in the pub industry and raise standards across the board. The scheme will increase the consistency and quality of service provided in Irish pubs to visitors, both domestic and international.

The VFI identified the need for a quality assurance scheme that gives consumers a selection of pubs to choose from based on the size, style, location and service offered, so the Federation has welcomed this new initiative.

VFI President Gerry Mellett stated, “The Irish pub is a vital tourist attraction but it has been well-documented that the pub sector has suffered in recent years. The launch of this scheme is a very positive development for the wider hospitality industry as it will help increase the consistency and quality of service provided in Irish pubs to visitors.

“VFI members are eager to do whatever is needed to provide a high quality experience to their regular customers and visitors alike and Fáilte Ireland’s support and recognition of the importance of the Irish pub will give a much-needed boost to the future of this industry. Discerning visitors rightly demand the highest standards and this quality assurance scheme will ensure these are met.”

Fáilte Ireland will operate the scheme through its established framework and Irish publicans are encouraged to participate.  Information sessions will take place around the country during the forthcoming VFI Roadshow.  Publicans interested in applying can register their interest on the dedicated website www.onlinelistingtool.failteireland.ie.
At the launch Tony Lenehan of Fáilte Ireland outlined the reasons for developing this new scheme and the benefits of becoming involved.

“In the current environment, quality is the key to boosting your business and improving your profits with customers and visitors demanding high quality experiences. With this in mind we developed Raising the Bar with the VFI, the aim of which is to bring Irish pubs another step closer to delivering a high quality experience while meeting and exceeding customers’ expectations.
“Pubs taking part in this new accreditation programme, the first of its kind in Ireland, will also benefit from a number of distinct advantages including access to direct business supports, marketing opportunities through Fáilte Ireland as well as free listings on the domestic and international Discover Ireland websites.”
Gerry Mellett added, “Quality assured pubs under this scheme will enjoy the benefit of Fáilte Ireland’s presence and marketing expertise both nationally and internationally. The application process is simple and inexpensive so I am recommending that all VFI members participate in this important scheme”.
For more information on the National Standards Framework Pub Accreditation and the approval criteria go to www.failteireland.ie. Publicans who wish to participate in the scheme can also contact their local VFI representative or email approvedpubs@failteireland.ie.

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