The Irish Distillers Association (IDA) is a representative organisation for distillers of Irish Single Malt Whisky and Irish Single Pot Still Whiskey as defined by the Irish Whiskey GI Product Specification.
- IDA’s sole remit is as a representative and activist organisation.
- IDA wishes to create a sector within the Irish distilling industry that is comparable to the artisan single malt distilling sector in Scotland.
- The IDA wishes the public to be able to differentiate between IDA members (pot stills only, no sourced spirit) and distillers who use column stills and/or sourced spirit.
- The IDA will lobby for changes to applicable regulations that reflect the interests of its members, consistent with the membership criteria below. The IDA is a registered lobbyist in Dublin and Brussels and will fully publish all of its lobbying activities online.
Criteria for membership
- IDA members brew and distill spirit drinks using pot stills only or have demonstrably embarked on a process of doing so. Any hybrid stills used by the member must conform to the Irish Whiskey Product Specification (formerly the “Technical File”).
- Neither the member, nor any entity that has the same ultimate controlling beneficial ownership, owns or uses a column still nor has dealt in or sold spirit products distilled by others for the 2 years previous to membership and has publicly committed in writing to not doing so in the future.
- If a member uses grain in production, that grain must be grown in Ireland and fully traceable. All malt must have been malted in Ireland.
- Members publicly advocate for the adoption into Irish law, or the following or similar:
A person must not label, package, advertise or promote any Irish Whisky in a way that, having regard to the presentation of the product as a whole, creates a likelihood that the public may think that it has been distilled at any distillery or place, including fictitious or imaginary distilleries or places, other than the distillery or place at which it was actually distilled.
A person must not label, package, advertise or promote any Irish Whiskey in a way that, having regard to the presentation of the product as a whole, creates a likelihood that the public may think that the whisky was distilled by any person other than the person who distilled it, or the owner or operator of the distillery at which it was distilled, whether by an indication that that person is the distiller, the owner or operator of the distillery, or otherwise.
- Members’ products must strictly comply with the relevant Protected Geographic Indication Product Specification and with all applicable regulations.
- Members must not market or sell any product that uses a place of provenance in labelling and marketing information unless that product is entirely manufactured within 20km (straight line) of the place of provenance used.
- Members must be industry leaders in provenance, traceability and innovation or have demonstrably embarked on a process of achieving that status.
- Only wooden casks that have been previously used to mature commercially available alcoholic beverages, or are of virgin wood, may be used. Rejuvenation or modification of such casks is permitted but any methods used may not add flavours that are not derived from the original contents or from the wood itself.
- Members are committed to ongoing reform of the regulatory environment around Irish whiskey production, to the enforcement of all applicable regulations and to the revision, after a public consultation process, of the Irish Whisky Product Specification.
- Members commit to engaging in relevant debate internally and with non-members in a way that is factual, objective and respectful.
The Irish Distillers Association welcomes new members who comply with all of the above criteria. Members as of January 2021 are Torc Brewing Company LTD, Killarney Distillers LTD and Kenmare Butter Market LTD.