It will likely comes as no surprise to most readers that St. Patrick’s day is one of serious consumption. It’s the fourth biggest drinking day of the year, after New Year’s Eve, Christmas, and the Fourth of July. Guinness, the Irish brewing giant, sees an enormous spike in purchases around St. Patrick’s day — sales rise to nearly twice that of a typical day. All told, more than 13 million pints of the dark beer are consumed across the globe on St. Patty’s Day — enough Guinness to fill 60% of the Empire State Building.
The effect of St. Patrick’s Day on food consumption is also profound. Corned beef and cabbage distributors see sales spike so drastically in mid-March that the holiday is considered that industry’s “Christmas.” Only 5% of Americans consume corned beef on a regular basis (“regular basis” here meaning around three or four times a year), but more than 30% enjoy the traditionally Irish dish on St. Patty’s day. Vendors of corned beef prepare weeks in advance for the surge, which can put a heavy strain on supply chains, as well as vendors and grocers who don’t usually see such high demand for their product.
… And Be Merry