Cheap supermarket booze killing pubs

A Carndonagh business man says cheap booze sold by supermarket giants is killing the rural pub industry.

Bar owner Mickey McClure was agreeing with comments made by the Vinters Federation of Ireland this week who claim the availability of low priced alcohol coupled with the imposition of the smoking ban has contributed to the death of the Irish pub.

This week the Revenue Commissioners released figures showing the number of pub licences in Ireland over the past five years has fallen by 1,300.

Mr McClure told the Journal: "I would agree with the Vinters Federation completely.

"I would notice a big difference in trade because of booze being sold cheaply in off licences and big supermarkets.

"Some of the big supermarkets were selling drink over the Christmas period and we couldn't even buy it in at the price they are able to sell it at.

"With the recession there are a lot of people choosing to drink at home these days and they're buying their booze from the big supermarkets."

Despite these claims Mr McClure said business hasn't been too bad for publicans in Carndonagh over the Christmas period - despite the rise in people choosing to socialise at home and the recent spell of bad weather.

He added: "Business hasn't been too bad here, most of the pubs in the town have done quite well over the New Year period.

"Christmas was in a way difficult because of the snow, nobody could get out but thankfully they made up for it in the New Year."