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Irish Beverage Exports Worth €1.2 Billion in 2014

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Irish Beverage Exports Worth €1.2 Billion in 2014

Irish Beverage Exports Worth €1.2 Billion in 2014
January 19
10:45 2015

The Drinks Industry Group of Ireland (DIGI) has highlighted the importance of beverage exports to the Irish economy, welcoming new Bord Bia research which shows that they were on the up again last year. In total, beverage exports put in a robust performance growing by 1% in 2014 to €1.2 billion, with alcoholic beverages accounting for over 80% of beverage exports.

According to the research Irish whiskey exports are the main driver of beverage export growth, with double digit growth recorded again in 2014. Irish whiskey is the fastest growing spirits category globally, with exports rising by 60% since 2009 (€141m) to reach €365m in 2014. It’s predicted that exports will double by 2020 and double again by 2030 to 25m 9 litre cases. There are currently 9 active distilleries in Ireland with 8 more scheduled to open by the end of 2015.

Irish beer accounted for 19% of beverage exports with craft beer exports continuing to rise. There are currently 50 operational microbreweries with 40% of them currently exporting. This number is set to exceed 100 by 2020. According to Bord Bia, the growing number of brewers matched with developments among exporters will help drive renewed growth in the beer sector over the coming years.

Cream liqueur was the second biggest beverage export after whiskey, accounting for 26% of exports.

The research shows that Ireland exports beverage products to 125 markets worldwide with the UK, US, Canada, Germany and France taking the place of the top 5 markets. France is the fastest growing market, with Irish beverage exports increasing by 20% to €40m in 2014. There was strong emerging market demand in 2014 and key growth regions included Asia, the Middle East, South America and Africa.

Speaking about the report, DCU Economist Tony Foley says: “Bord Bia’s report confirms that 46% of beverage exports are sold in markets outside the EU with a value of €560m. The UK remains the largest export market accounting for 32% of beverage exports. The outlook for 2015 for beverage exports is broadly positive, driven by an anticipated further rise in whiskey sales, the ongoing development of emerging markets and the ever increasing range of craft beers and spirits being produced in Ireland.”

Peter O’Brien, Chairman of DIGI, says: “With some of the most celebrated and internationally recognised brands exported from Ireland, our drinks exports are clearly a national success story. Bord Bia’s report confirms this position matching growth with a hugely positive outlook for 2015. We’d call on the Government to do everything in their power to support the industry so it can continue to build on current success, identify new markets for products and find innovative product solutions, which will in turn help foster further economic recovery in Ireland.”

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