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Craft Beer Makers Get Crafty

According to the Independent Craft Brewers of Ireland, there were 15 microbreweries operating in the Republic of Ireland in 2012, last year there was 90.

62 of those microbreweries produce their own branded beer with the remaining 28 providing contract brewing services to companies. The craft brewing industry is on the up in Ireland and in terms of value, the overall sales by craft beer companies stood at €59 million last year, up eleven-fold since 2011.

More and more microbreweries are looking into exporting their innovative drinks and this, according to industry experts, is the right direction to be looking at currently for the craft market. Drinks sector manager at Bord Bia, Denise Murphy says that while there has been a drop in new market registered entrants the “home market is becoming saturated”, she explains. “There is a need for the category to start working very hard on exports now”.

Tony Healy, founder of Spectac International and owner of Dundalk Bay Brewery has trust in the ability of Irish microbreweries to start exporting. Dundalk Bay Brewery comprises of a fully automated, 50 hectolitre brewhouse and provides contract brewing serviced to those companies looking to grow.

Dundalk Bay Brewery’s goal will eventually be to develop their own brand of craft beers, but for now, they will continue to focus on fulfilling the orders for their contract work. Faye Healy, who runs the business along with her father explains “Most microbreweries operating at the moment are too small to scale up” she says. “Irish microbreweries are slow to export because they don’t have the capital investment required to scale”.

To read more about the development of the craft brewing industry in Ireland, please read more on the Irish Times website here.

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