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Irishman Saves €700 Buying 500 Cans Of Guinness Before Change To Alcohol Prices

A man in Ireland has saved €400 by buying 500 cans of Guinness before a government price rise on alcohol.

Credit: N Chadwick/

A man in Ireland bought 500 cans of Guinness before new legislation came into effect which would raise the price of alcohol 

Brendan, a man who phoned into RTE’s Liveline, told presenter Joe Duffy that he “totally stocked up” on Guinness before new legislation to increase the price of alcohol in the Republic of Ireland came in to place on the 4th of January. 

The new legislation has been incredibly controversial, with only a small handful of other countries have adopted similar laws which place a minimum price on alcohol.

The new regulations- which sees alcohol priced at 10 cents per gram- have caused alcohol to soar in price in Ireland.

“The day before the minimum pricing,” Brendan told Duffy, “one of the smaller retailers had a special offer on Guinness. It was a 12 pack for €10.”

He goes on to explain that he bought enough alcohol to last him for the rest of the year. “I probably got about 500 beers,” he told RTE. 

He estimated that he spent roughly €400 in the off-licence that day and noted how he received a “few funny looks” from other customers as he and his friend were forced to make two trips in order to transport the large amounts of alcohol home.

Brendan believes that the same amount of alcohol today would have cost him roughly €1,100 due to the minimum pricing regulations, claiming that buying the alcohol in bulk before the 4th of January helped him save over €700. 

Brendan, who receives social welfare, would have been hit heavily by the increase in alcohol prices, and argues that the move by the government is “discriminatory”. 

“I don’t know if they [the government] carried out any conclusive studies that alcoholism doesn’t affect wealthy people, it only affects the lower classes.”

He believes that the attempts to curtail serious illnesses and deaths due to alcohol consumption are flawed as “there are no other measures brought in” in order to help fight addiction. 

Irish health minister Stephen Donelly claims that similar measures brought in to reduce alcohol-related illnesses have been a success in easing the pressures placed on health services and claims he “[looks] forward to it working here”. 

Others have criticised Joe Duffy for making light of the situation, claiming that Brendan hasn’t saved €700, but has spent €400 on copious amounts of alcohol. 

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