Are the crowds on St. Paddy's that quaff it,
But at home it appears
That alien beers
Have weaned many Dubliners off it.
So the stout-brewer's future is really
In overseas markets ideally,
As they're growing the most
Where the typical toast
Is in Haussa, Chinese or Swahili.
Guinness stout, the iconic "official drink of St. Patrick's Day", was once the beer of choice for two out of three Irish pub-goers. However, a 2006 study by Ireland's Competition Authority found that foreign lagers such as Budweiser and Heineken had become "more fashionable" and taken 63% of Ireland's beer market, compared with just 32% for stout. As the luck of the Irish would have it, however, emerging markets in Asia and Africa continue to provide a boost to global sales.
* Let us not forget, as we toast a serpent-free Ireland, the example of Guinness' parent company Diageo plc, which supports the Red Cross, and with it, the people of another afflicted island nation. *