The Irish Whiskey Association has revealed that 814,000 people visited Ireland's 12 whiskey distillery centres in 2017, representing an 11% rise on the figure of 733,000 for 2016.
As reported by The Irish Times, the Irish Whiskey Association's data indicates that most of the people who travelled to the centres, which include Co. Meath's Slane Distillery and the Pearse Lyons distillery of Dublin, came from the US, UK, Germany, France and northern Europe.
Commenting on the above information, head of the Irish Whiskey Association William Lavelle said, "Continued double-digit growth proves that Irish whiskey tourism is a hot trend right now and an increasingly important part of Ireland’s tourism offer. Whiskey tourism is delivering tourists, jobs and investment to local economies right across Ireland, from Dublin’s Liberties to rural communities."
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However, Lavelle also warned that the promotion of Ireland's distilleries as tourist destinations could be "severely constrained" by the government's alcohol Bill, which he he proclaimed could "put jobs at risk in communities which are heavily reliant on the influx of visitors to the local distillery visitor centre."