Both the Licensed Vintners Association (LVA) and the Vintners Federation of Ireland (VFI) have confirmed their intention to merge the two organisations into one national body.
LVA chief executive Donall O'Keeffe told Hospitality Ireland that at separate meetings on Tuesday (26 May), the councils of the LVA and VFI overwhelmingly endorsed the proposed merger.
The councils have described the move as a "hugely positive development and is in the best long-term interests of the licensed trade and its suppliers".
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"We feel there's considerable merit to the merger, it will give publicans a single voice here in Ireland," said O'Keeffe.
The council endorsement will now be put to a vote of all members (4600 publicans) after the summer break (August/September) with a strong recommendation to merge from the respective councils.
O'Keeffe added that centralising the two organisations in one head office will also add significant efficiencies in terms of administration.