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Dublin: 14°C Tuesday 19 October 2021

Remember all that posh wine the Government is trying to sell? No one wants it

One only merchant made an offer for the wine this year.

THE DEPARTMENT OF Foreign Affairs is struggling to sell off the contents of its wine cellar.

A spokesperson for the DFA confirmed to TheJournal.ie that it hasn’t sold any wine so far this year.

Earlier today, the Irish Examiner and the Herald both reported on an internal memo at the Department which stated that only one merchant has made offers for the full list of wine for sale.

The document noted: “We did not receive any suitable offers for the wines offered and in some cases the offers were risible.”

In February 2013, the then Tánaiste and Foreign Affairs Minister Eamon Gilmore announced that the DFA had ended “the practice of purchasing expensive wines“.

Some 2,343 bottles of wine stored in cellars at Iveagh House were deemed “tradeable”, at a value of over €77,000.

In December 2013, the Department successfully sold off a batch of wine for €11,160. The wine was sold to a single merchant based in Ireland.

In 2013, Gilmore said that the Department “maintained a stock of wine for use in relation to State and official hospitality”.

According to figures supplied by the Tánaiste at the time, the cost of restocking the Department’s wine cellar was €7,834.66 in 2012, compared to €29,541.99 in 2005.

A spokesperson for the DFA told us that it “continues to manage [its wine] stock in order to provide the best value to the Department and to the exchequer”.

The Department continues to be in contact with wine merchants regarding the market value of its wine stock. Stock that has been identified will be disposed of in due course, subject to market conditions.

Tánaiste: Dept of Foreign Affairs has stopped buying ‘expensive wines’

About the author:

Órla Ryan

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