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Christmas shopping begins in earnest

AS the Christmas shopping season begins in earnest this weekend, an appeal is being made to potential customers, if at all possible, to keep the cash registers ringing around the Banner County. This is part of the buy Irish, buy local campaign.

In our 56-page Christmas shopping guide in this week’s Clare Champion, we showcase the many and varied shops, businesses and services countywide that depend on our continued support.

For most, especially retailers, the festive season presents the best opportunity for them to boost their income, as a cushion against the leaner months. There is very little in the way of Christmas goods or foodstuff that cannot be bought or ordered without straying outside of the county boundary.

Although Christmas concentrates the mind on this issue, there is no reason why we cannot adopt this stance all through the year.

The Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association (ISME) has appealed to consumers to make a national effort and ‘shop for Ireland’ during the Christmas season, to ensure that local jobs are retained.

According to ISME chief executive, Mark Fielding, if every consumer switched just one tenth of their imported shopping to Irish-produced goods, it would shift the balance in favour of local producers, manufacturers and retailers and go a long way towards sustaining Irish jobs.

Every €10 spent locally on Irish products generates €24 of benefit to the local community, while 45 cent of every euro spent is reinvested locally, in comparison to only 15 cent for the foreign multiples.

Shop local is critical to support jobs in small, family-based enterprises. A job lost in a local shop means that person’s spending power is diminished and other shops, businesses and service-providers in the area lose that custom.

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