Ireland's C&C Group has extended its Bulmers cider line to include a pear variety, as it looks to reinvigorate sales.

Bulmers Pear is available in a 568ml pint bottle, 330ml long neck bottle and a 500ml can throughout the licensed and grocery trade, the company said today (27 February).

The launch is being supported by a marketing campaign to include sampling, TV, outdoor, radio, press and online.

Bulmers managing director Michael Merrins believes the new addition will be the "most successful brand extension" in the history of the company. 

"This new move is indicative of our commitment to develop and grow the cider category in Ireland in this difficult market climate," Merrins said.

Falling cider sales in Ireland have led to C&C announcing plans to cut 120 jobs at its manufacturing plant in Clonmel, as part of a restructuring programme in Ireland to be complete by June 2009.

The move, which will also see the firm's Dublin operations merged into one office, was announced following a meeting with employees and union representatives. Union representatives have since said that they will oppose the plans, however.