C&C Group is to spend EUR200m (US$254.2m) expanding its cider production facilities in Ireland to meet still booming demand for Magners.

The company said the investment will double capacity at the site in Clonmel, Co Tipperary over the next 18 months.

The expansion comes under a year after C&C said it would boost production at the site but the continued popularity of Magners in the UK has meant further investment is needed.

Earlier this month, C&C said Magners volumes had soared 250% in the last six months as the company completed the roll out of the brand throughout the UK.

In Ireland, C&C said Magners' stablemate Bulmers outperformed a stagnant Irish long alcoholic drinks market with a 7% rise in volumes during the six months to 1 September.

A spokesman for C&C said: "Magners has been such a huge success. At the margin, we had some supply issues and it became clear that we needed to speed up our expansion programme."

The spokesman said the expansion would include increased storage and two new bottling lines. A "significant amount" of the expansion work would be completed by next spring, he added.