Yesterday April 26th a new Irish Whiskey Mentoring Programme was launched. Hosted by The Irish Whiskey Association (IWA), it was created to support aspiring distillers and will count with the expertise of well established companies such as Bushmills and Irish Distillers.
It will not only benefit newcomers aiming to produce premium Irish whiskey, a category that has been experiencing vertiginous growth in recent years, it will also be an opportunity for all players in the sector, as retailers, tourist operators and people in the bar trade will all gain from a better prepared new generation of craft distillers.
“The Irish Whiskey Mentoring programme is a unique opportunity for aspiring distillers to meet with and learn from the best in the industry,” said Miriam Mooney, Head of the IWA.
More than 40 participants completed stage one of the mentoring workshop to date and seven distilleries which are at various stages of development have now their particular mentor.
The programme has already had success stories such as that of Walsh Whiskey Distillery at Royal Oak in Carlow, which recently opened its €25 million distillery and is the name behind The Irishman and Writers’ Tears.
Managing Director Bernard Walsh worked with Irish Distillers as he prepared to commission his distillery. He said: “The programme offers new distilleries like ours a key opportunity to learn from some of the best craftsmen in the world. The expertise shared with me during the mentoring programme was invaluable.”
This programme comes as part of the IWA goal of helping double Irish whiskey exports and tripling Irish whiskey tourism by 2025.
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