Institute of Technology Carlow Launches Ireland's First BSc. (Hons) in Brewing & Distilling
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Institute of Technology Carlow Launches Ireland’s First BSc. (Hons) in Brewing & Distilling

Last Thursday 28th of September, the Institute of Technology Carlow launched the country’s first Bachelor of Science (Honours) Degree programme in Brewing & Distilling. It’s the first of its kind on the island of Ireland and the result of two years of research and development by Institute of Technology Carlow that has included consultation with industry, representative organisations, national bodies and government.

Alongside the degree course, the Institute will offer several continuous professional development (CDP) programmes for employees. They include: Yeast Biology; Malting & Brewing Raw Materials; The Brewing Process; Distillation and Distilled Spirits Production and Post Distillation Downstream Processing.

“As a university-level Institute, our purpose is to identify and provide opportunities for our 7,000 learners to gain the skills, knowledge and attributes required to fulfil their professional and personal goals, while simultaneously supporting and driving the development of a vibrant economy”, commented Dr Patricia Mulcahy President of Institute of Technology Carlow. “The new four-year BSc (Hons) in Brewing and Distilling is the latest manifestation of this. One of the most welcome aspects of this initiative has been the expert support that we have received from the sector across the region, nationally and internationally. My thanks particularly to Carlow Brewing Company, Walsh Whiskey, Waterford Distillery, Alltech, Heriot-Watt University, An Bord Bia, Teagasc, the Irish Whiskey Association and the Irish Brewers Association”.

The brewing and distilling sector is now one of Ireland’s fastest growing industries, exporting over 95% of its production. According to the Food Wise 2025 national plan, Ireland’s brewing and distilling industry will contribute towards the creation of an additional 23,000 food and drink based sectoral jobs by 2025, an 85% increase in food and drink exports to €19 billion and a 65% increase in primary production value to €10 billion. Whiskey exports are up 60% since 2009 with 60 million litres exported per annum. 28 distilleries are now operating or being developed on the island of Ireland and the number of microbreweries are expected to grow to 100 by 2025. Direct employment in distilling will grow 30% by 2025. A surge of interest in craft beer and micro distilleries, emerging markets in Asia and the explosion of the craft alcohol market in the United States are fuelling the sector.

The first BSc. (Hons) Brewing and Distilling undergraduates will begin their four-year course next September via the CAO under the code CW108. The course includes industry work placement and access to brewing and distilling facilities. Graduates with a relevant Bachelor of Science Degree are eligible to apply for advanced entry onto the programme. Mature applicants will be assessed on an individual basis and may be interviewed.

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