Guinness sales at Dáil bar fall in 2012
Figures released by the Houses of the Oireachtas Service show the sales of Guinness at the Dáil bar dropped from 120 kegs to 98 kegs
Sales of Guinness in the Dáil Bar are down by almost 20 per cent. Photograph: Alan Betson
The economic slump hit home for Guinness drinkers in the country’s best-known bar last year with sales of the black stuff down almost 20 per cent.
Figures released by the Houses of the Oireachtas Service show the sales of Guinness at the Dáil bar dropped from 120 kegs to 98 kegs.
There are around 90 pints in a keg, showing that around 8,820 pints of Guinness were sold at the Dáil bar last year – down from the 10,800 sold in 2011 – a drop of 18.3 per cent.
The figures released in response to an FOI request show that sales of Heineken also dropped sharply decreasing from 55 kegs or 4,950 pints to 44 kegs or 3,960 – a drop of 14 per cent.
The drop in the number of pints sold at the Dáil bar coincided with the numbers working there going from seven to six, while the numbers employed in the Oireachtas restaurant dipped from 38 to 35.
The cut-price drink available at the Dáil bar was not enough to prevent the drop in demand.
Currently a pint of Guinness costs €4.30 and a pint of Heineken costs €4.70 – this compares to €4.80 sought for a pint of Guinness and €5.20 sought for a pint of Heineken in Dublin city centre pubs.
The Dáil bar recorded a net profit of €138,600 in 2011 arising from sales of €299,913; figures for 2012 have yet to be complete.
Fianna Fáil TD Timmy Dooley said that the recent drop in the sale of drink could be explained by the increased demand for alcohol from newly elected TDs’ supporters in the aftermath of the 2011 general election. “After any new Dáil is elected, it wouldn’t be unusual for the Dáil bar to have higher demands on the bar between supporters and family members of new TDs.”
‘Soup and sandwiches’
A spokeswoman for the Office of the Houses of the Oireachtas said yesterday: “It is a myth that you can only get alcoholic drink at the Dáil bar. It does a lot of business in scones, coffees and teas along with soup and sandwiches. It is used café-style and is more of a tea and coffee facility for the members.”