Heineken is now the top-selling lager brand in Ireland in both the off- and on-trade, according to the company’s mid-year performance update, for the six month period to end June 2014.
In the first half of 2014, Heineken Ireland’s portfolio of beers increased its volume share of the market to 28%.
Other members of the brewery’s portfolio also experienced strong growth, including Coors Light and specialty brands like Tiger and Desperados. The company’s newest beer, Radler - a low strength premium lager launched in May 2014 - is also growing quickly, the company said.
Maggie Timoney, CEO Heineken in Ireland, commented: “Our continued focus on top line growth continues to be successful with the Heineken brand again performing well in the premium segment. We remain committed to investing in all of our brands and delivering impactful commercial programmes for our consumers and our customers”.
However, the brewer’s report was critical of the government’s alcohol taxation policy, which it claims has resulted in a 40% increase in excise on beer over the last two budgets and threatens many Irish pubs with closure.
Heineken called on the government to provide stimulus to the industry, particularly in the rural areas which have been most affected. “It continues to be tough to operate in this declining market, particularly in the context of the punitive excise tax increase imposed on our industry by the government," said Timoney. "These taxes are a tax on consumers, tourism and jobs.”