Pat Rigney from The Shed Distillery elected Chair of Drinks Ireland

December 03, 2020

Pat Rigney, the Managing Director and Founder at The Shed Distillery, which makes Drumshanbo Gunpowder Irish Gin, has been elected Chair of Drinks Ireland, the Ibec trade association that represents drinks manufacturers and suppliers on the island of Ireland.

Drinks Ireland represents 61 drinks manufacturers on the island of Ireland and includes the category trade associations of Drinks Ireland|Beer, Drinks Ireland|Cider, Drinks Ireland|Irish Whiskey, Drinks Ireland|Spirits and Drinks Ireland|Wine.

Pat Rigney takes over the position of Chair from Oliver Loomes, Country Director of Diageo Ireland.

Prior to Covid-19, the drinks industry was experiencing strong growth. In 2019, it generated exports to over 140 markets, worth €1.45 billion. It contributed €2.6 billion in VAT and Excise payments to the exchequer. Drinks Ireland, with its new Chair Pat Rigney, will help support the sector in recovering from the impact of the pandemic in 2021 and beyond.

Commenting on his appointment today, Pat Rigney said:

“Ireland’s drinks industry faces a number of challenges. The sector has and continues to be significantly impacted by Covid-19, which has hit production, exports, and sales. Beyond this, it faces the prospect of a no-deal Brexit, with negotiations ongoing, and also continues to be impacted by trade disputes between the EU and the US.

“But at its core the industry is resilient, dynamic, innovative, and has performed strongly in domestic and export markets in recent years. I’m looking forward to working with Drinks Ireland and its membership.”

Patricia Callan, Director of Drinks Ireland said:

“I would like to congratulate Pat Rigney on his appointment as chair of Drinks Ireland. I look forward to working with him on the issues that are pertinent to the drinks industry in Ireland, including our ambition to drive recovery in the sector in 2021 and beyond.

“I’d also like to thank Oliver Loomes for his great work as Chair of Drinks Ireland over the past 4 years.”