VFI calls for urgent energy supports in the budget

A new survey shows that due to growing cost of living pressures, people are planning to cut back on their visits to pubs for the rest of the year.

The CGA (Curren Goodden Associates) consumer cost of living survey found that 42% of Irish adults plan to visit hospitality venues much less often by the New Year.

The survey was carried out in Ireland and the UK last month.

The survey data has prompted Irish Winegrowers’ Federation chief executive Paul Clancy to call for urgent and substantial energy supports for the pub business in the 2023 budget.

Mr Clancy said pubs cannot pass on increases to customers who are already under financial pressure.

He said fuel bills for the country’s 7,000 energy-heavy pubs were skyrocketing and this latest crisis comes after the Covid pandemic saw many pubs permanently closed across the country.

“The survey results paint a bleak future for Ireland’s pubs, their staff and the communities where they often provide a vital social hub,” said Mr Clancy, whose organization represents 4,000 publicans.

“With 42% of pub goers expected to reduce their visits due to cost of living pressures, it is essential that Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe provides urgent and substantial energy supports to the pub trade in the 2023 budget,” did he declare.

“The reduction in attendance, coupled with an unprecedented rise in energy costs after 22 months of Covid closures and restrictions, means we are almost certainly looking at the permanent closure of many more pubs,” he said. warned.

Today’s survey also found that despite pressures on disposable income, the hospitality industry remains a vital part of people’s lives.

69% of respondents say that eating or drinking out is the pleasure they expect the most, with 80% saying they are satisfied with the quality of the product and the service offered.

There has been a 21% drop in the number of pubs in Ireland since 2005, according to the Drinks Industry Group of Ireland, but the sector still employs 50,000 people and generates €60.7 million in wages.

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