Ireland: Stout-Hearted Island

Irishmen drink the rich, dark brew known as Guinness Stout pretty much as a patriotic duty. Of all the stout consumed in the country, 75% is produced by 206-year-old Arthur Guinness Son & Co., which has grown so large that it is a keystone of the Irish economy. Guinness employs 4,300 people, more than anyone else except the government. Indirectly, it supports 26,000 employees of 14,500 pubs—and 16,000 Irish farmers depend on Guinness to buy 100,000 tons of barley annually. The company pays $23 million yearly in excise taxes, has lent the government money to build peat-briquette factories, contributes...

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