Irish gin set for progression by 2026
Irish gin producers and brand owners have set out their plans to increase sales between now and 2026.
There are currently at least 37 distilleries on the island of Ireland producing gin, with more than 70 brands.
Drinks Ireland|Spirits’ Irish Gin Strategy 2022-2026, includes measures to promote world-leading standards of quality and authenticity, develop the domestic market, promote Irish gin worldwide and support the viability of Irish gin distilleries.
According to Drinks Ireland|Spirits, 2020 was the first year in which Irish gin sales declined, due to the pandemic. According to the report, between 2014 and 2020, the category grew by 184%.
As people return to restaurants and bars following the relaxation of Covid-19 restrictions, and global travel picks up, the agency said it expects the category to return to pre-pandemic levels over time.
“The Irish gin sector has grown very rapidly in recent years, driven by innovative and ambitious producers and brand owners dedicated to creating authentic, quality products,” said David Boyd-Armstrong, chairman of Drinks Ireland|Spirits’ Irish gin working group, and co-founder and chief distiller of Rademon Estate Distillery, which creates Shortcross Gin.
“Our strategy will enable the sector to take advantage of domestic and international market opportunities and meet the various challenges ahead,” he added. He said a key part of the strategy focuses on protecting the Irish gin category.
“We will work towards the introduction of standards covering the marketing and labeling of Irish gin in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK to ensure that consumers know what they are buying,” he said.
Ireland is currently the dominant market for Irish gin, but the strategy is focused on driving export growth: the UK, US, Germany and Canada are the main targets in the coming years.
Asia, and specifically China, has also been identified as a target market.
Vincent McGovern, director of Drinks Ireland|Spirits, said a new strategy is needed to ensure the sector can recover from Covid-19 and grow in the coming years.
“Irish gin has been a real national success story in recent years,” he said.
“Our members employ dozens of people in both the cities and rural areas of Ireland who produce this prized spirit and export it to markets around the world,” he added.
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