"What happened with gin in the public psyche?" - how one Irish gin is competing with the top gins in the world
"I was in one retailer recently and you had 620 gins."
Pat Rigney is the founder of The Shed Distillery, the creators of Drumshanbo Gunpowder Gin.
The drinks industry, like most other sectors, has been undergoing huge change since COVID changed our lives in March, with supermarkets focussing on what he describes as a smaller selection of 'winning brands' to stock their shelves.
Despite the challenges presented by the virus, Rigney has recently opened The Shed Distillery Visitor Experience in Drumshanbo, Co. Leitrim, the home of the gin.
He also recently released the first batch of Drumshanbo Single Pot Still Irish whiskey, the first whiskey distilled in Connacht for 101 years.
Rigney told Sonya Lennon, host of The Architects of Business, made in partnership with EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™, that whilst gin has become more popular than ever with Irish consumers, the huge selection of gins available makes the business very competitive.
Sonya Lennon: What happened with gin in the public psyche? How come, one minute none of us were talking about gin, and the next minute, everybody was talking about it, and all of a sudden every bar had 15 gins on offer. How did that happen?
Pat Rigney: Gin is a very interesting way of having a really interesting experience and maybe trying a number of different brands.
What we're seeing now is that consumers are beginning to settle into a smaller selection of brands and staying with them...
I was in one retailer in Italy recently. Now, it was a speciality store and you had 620 gins. So how do you survive on that? So, we have massive competition. So there's local gins, regional gins, international gins, and everywhere you go there's intense competition.
Listen to the full interview with the 2018 finalist in the EY Entrepreneur of the Year™ programme below.
The conversation about the gin explosion happens at 17.25 onwards.
Watch the interview here.