Drinks Ireland|Cider has released a new report entitled Cider Market Report 2019 that reveals that the value of Irish cider exports rose by 32% to over €64 million last year.
According to the report, the rise in cider exports was primarily driven by UK exports, with resurgent consumer demand and preparatory planning and stockpiling for potential Brexit shocks resulting in an increase in exports to Britain. The report estimates that 90% of Irish cider exports went to the UK in 2019.
The report states that cider had a 7.4% market share last year, making it the third most popular alcoholic drink in Ireland after beer and wine.
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Total cider sales in Ireland decreased by 1.7% between 2018 and 2019, according to the report, with approximately 63 million litres of cider being sold last year. The report also indicates that per capita consumption of cider declined by 0.47%.
Additionally, the report states that the cider sector was worth just under €60 million in 2019, and that the sector has contributed over half a billion euro in excise to the exchequer over the past decade.
Call For COVID-19 Supports
In light of the COVID-19 crisis, Drinks Ireland|Cider has called for urgent cashflow supports for cider producers, including the deferral of all further excise and VAT payments until the crisis has passed. It has also called for a reduction of the commercial rate charge, in line with the reduction in turnover, for the period of the pandemic, and has urged the government to allow direct online selling to support the Irish craft drinks sector.
Head of Drinks Ireland|Cider Jonathan McDade stated, "Ireland's cider industry has gone from strength to strength in recent years, and has made a vital contribution to the economy. While the COVID-19 pandemic has hit the cider industry ‑ like many other sectors ‑ hard, with adequate supports it can bounce back. In the immediate term, cashflow supports are required. We're also calling for direct online selling to be allowed by craft cider producers, as many may not have a large presence in the off-trade.
"Irish cider drinkers pay the third highest rate of excise on cider in the European Union. We also call on the government to lobby for cider to be part of the EU Excise Structures Exemption. This will enable craft cider producers to secure excise relief reductions that are similar to those enjoyed by the craft beer sector."
© 2020 Hospitality Ireland – your source for the latest industry news. Article by Dave Simpson. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.