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Irish Distillers invests €150m in whiskey growth

Pernod Ricard’s Irish Distillers unit plans to pump €150 million (US$173.7m) into its Midleton Distillery, maturation site and bottling plant over the next two years to meet “increasing demand” for its whiskeys.

Irish Distillers will invest a total of €150m in expanding its Midleton Distillery (above), maturation site and bottling plant

Of the funds put forward, close to €130m (US$150.6m) will be used to expand and upgrade the Midleton Distillery and maturation site in Dungourney, County Cork.

Irish Distillers has already added an extra mechanical vapour recompression evaporator, made by GEA Wiegand in Germany, to its Midleton Distillery, enabling the distillery to expand its capacity further.

It will also install a third mash filter and new fermenters in order to meet “increasing demand” for its whiskey portfolio, which includes leading Irish whiskey brand Jameson.

The money will also go towards building eight new maturation warehouses at the Dungourney site, which will each have the capacity to store 16,800 casks. Additional land will also be bought to support the next development phase.

More than €20m (US$23.2m) will be used to upgrade the company’s Fox and Geese bottling site in Dublin, including extensions to the main operating bottling hall, storage warehouses, laboratory and office spaces, plus improvements to bottling and packing equipment.

Conor McQuaid, chairman and CEO of Irish Distillers, said: “Irish whiskey is the fastest growing premium spirit in the world, with sales now accounting for more than one third of all Irish beverage exports.

“This investment will help to allow this growth to continue for years to come. The company is proud to play its role in the Irish drinks industry, which is a hugely important part of the Irish economy.”

Last month, McQuaid spoke to The Spirits Business about his plans to make Jameson Irish whiskey a “truly global” brand.

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