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Foley, Anthony (2018) National and regional employment in the drinks and hospitality sector. Dublin: Drinks Industry Group of Ireland.

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Ireland’s drinks industry is experiencing its renaissance. Modern consumers demand quality and variety. In response, drinks businesses have seized the opportunity to produce, market and sell innovative new products to customers in Ireland and importantly, around the world.


This economic activity is of huge value. As well as generating Exchequer revenue worth €2.3 billion, the drinks industry keeps 90,000 Irish people in work. When the tourism sector is included (much of which is dependent on or associated with the drinks industry), total employment is 254,400, or 11.5% of all Irish jobs. In many rural parts of Ireland, tourism is the primary, and in some cases the only, employer. In terms of the accommodation and food service sector, which includes many drinks and tourism businesses, nine counties report a total employment share above the national average of 5.8%. This figure rises to 10.5% in Kerry. These jobs areimmensely important to their local economies and communities.


Ireland’s tourism and drinks products are held in high regard at home and abroad. Last year Fáilte Ireland recorded the seventh year of consecutive growth in overseas visitor numbers. In 2013, there were just four working whiskey distilleries in Ireland. Today there are eighteen, and a further sixteen are in development. The number of Irish microbreweries producing their own product has more than quadrupled since 2012, from 15 to 72.

Item Type
Publication Type
Irish-related, Report
Drug Type
August 2018
25 p.
Drinks Industry Group of Ireland
Place of Publication
Accession Number
HRB (Electronic Only)
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