Echlinville Distillery invests £9 million for expansion project
The future investment will not only help the distillery to expand but also generate 36 new jobs.
The Echlinville Distillery in County Down, Kircubbin, Ireland, distills and bottles premium and super-premium spirits such as gin and whiskey. Now, they have decided to expand their distillery both to increase its production capacity and to grow its Irish whisky and gin brands globally.
“This investment will allow [the distillery] to grow, and develop the portfolio of award-winning products. An emphasis on brand development will lead to growth in worldwide sales of premium and ultra-premium gin and whiskey.” said Kevin Holland, CEO of Invest Northern Ireland. “The investment includes the development of an immersive visitor center and the creation of 36 jobs. This is good news for the local Ards & North Down Borough Council area,” he added.
According to Holland, the new jobs include an operational, administrative and role-based offering for the visitor center. These roles will contribute to Northern Ireland’s economy with £1 million in annual salaries.
The distillery has managed to position itself on the shelves of almost 900 stores in Canada. Recently, the distillery secured a distribution agreement in the country. “This investment will help us substantially increase our production capacity. It will help us increase our export sales tenfold over the next five years,” said Shane Braniff, owner of Echlinville Distillery.
“We are increasing our distilling, bottling, labeling, storage and branding capabilities. All of these elements are key to strengthening the establishment of our brands in major international markets such as Russia and the United States“.
Invest Northern Ireland (Invest NI), the Northern Ireland Economic Development Agency, offered Echlinville £695,000 in support. These funds will help purchase new equipment, expand the capacity of its facilities to meet demand for its products and create 36 new jobs.
A “field to glass” distillery
Mr Braniff added: “As Northern Ireland’s first agricultural distillery, our whisky has “field to glass”. This is something that is increasingly important in the global food and drink industry.”
“We have built a strong reputation based on that approach and the quality of our products. Irish whisky is recognised as the fastest growing category of spirit in the world. This is giving us a great foundation on which to build our export business with the help of this Invest NI financing.”
“Every bottle that leaves our distillery has our address in Kircubbin. It also speaks to our roots in the Ards Peninsula.”
“As well as increasing exports around the world, we also hope to raise awareness of what this part of Ireland has to offer. Attract more visitors to the area with the development of a dedicated visitor center. We look forward to continued growth in the years ahead. I would also like to thank Invest NI for their continued support throughout our journey so far“.
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