Strange as it may seem, the growing clamour for action over the abuse of alcohol could yet prove the saviour of the Irish pub.
While Government action to tackle alcohol abuse seems closer than ever, the form this action is likely to take will probably favour pubs over other parts of the drink sector. For the first time, there is some common ground between health advocates and publicans, who both want to see curbs on the way drink is sold, often at bargain prices, in supermarkets, convenience shops and other off-licences.
The National Substance Misuse Strategy , published this month, recognised the “important role” the pub plays in community life and as an attraction for tourists. Never before have the devastating effects of alcohol misuse in Ireland been laid out so comprehensively in an official document, yet the report is noticeably softer on pubs than it is on other parts of the drinks industry.
Source: Paul Cullen, Irish Times, 20/02/2011