The growing demand for Irish gin is not expected to slow down as the Alcohol Beverage Federation of Ireland (ABFI) predict exports are set to rise significantly this year.
According to the ABFI, who have released their outlook for 2018, Irish gin is set to go global in 2018 with exports expected to grow in the US, Canadian, UK and German markets.
The report says that there are over 30 Irish gin brands currently on the market with exports of Irish gin more than trebling during 2017.
Overall, Irish drinks exports rose by 8% last year to €1.5 billion.
Production of Irish whiskey has continued to grow to meet increasing demand. There are 18 operational whiskey distilleries in Ireland with a further 16 planned.
This year will see a number of distilleries release their own distilled stock for the first time which will add diversity to the market.
Craft beers continue to be popular with Irish breweries looking to meet the growing demand for low-alcohol and non-alcohol beer. There are over 100 craft beer brands in Ireland.
Although the forecast provided by the ABFI is largely positive, the Federation warn that the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill could hinder growth.
The Bill proposes the introduction of health warnings on all alcohol products sold in the Republic of Ireland which includes a cancer warning on alcohol products.
The labelling and advertising proposals in the Public
Health (Alcohol) Bill will have unintended negative consequences on an industryJanuary 23, 2018
“The drinks industry is an important Irish industry, with innovation at its core," said Patricia Callan, Director of ABFI.
"However, we are concerned about the unintended negative consequences of the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill.
"We have seen a number of new players and new products hit the market in recent years, which has supported growth.
"The Alcohol Bill could slow down or even reverse this growth, as it includes proposals that would act as a barrier to entry and a barrier to innovation.
"Furthermore, the Bill is being introduced at a tumultuous time for Irish business, with 2018 due to be a pivotal year in the Brexit negotiations.
“We believe there is scope for reasonable amendments on advertising and labelling, which would protect competition, innovation and investment in the industry, as well as choice for consumers.”