Presidents Report – November

I have always said, in this industry you never know what is around the corner.

On the weekend of the 13th of October, we hosted our 41st gourmet festival in Kinsale, which was completely sold out! We showcased all our local producers and restaurants and it was another successfully festival.

On the Monday, we woke up to Hurricane Ophelia and Kinsale being one of the hardest hit areas it left us without power and water for 3 days, stock thrown in the bin, doors closed, bookings cancelled and you didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.

But we all know in this industry we are nothing but resilient and sometimes you just have to roll with the punches.

On a more positive note we fought a great battle in our campaign to Keep VAT at 9% and no increase in excise duty. At times, we thought the VAT was a lost cause and there was going to be a move to 10% but I am happy that the Government had the sense to see that with Brexit and in rural Ireland restaurants have a battle on the hands to keep their doors open. I would like to personally thank our CEO Adrian Cummins and the staff in the office who worked tirelessly during this campaign.

The campaign would also not of been successful without you, the members. By contacting your local TD’s and Councillors, they hear first-hand the issues facing the industry and how important the VAT rate at 9% is to our businesses.

I always find the month of November is a month to relax, take a little break recharge those batteries and hope those Christmas booking are flying in the door,

That’s what I am going to do this is why the report is shorter than usual.

Best wishes,

Liam Edwards

President – Restaurants Association of Ireland