Here's How Much Guinness Is Served On St. Patrick's Day

St Patrick's Day might have started out as a celebration of the life of Ireland's patron saint, but America is almost as committed to celebrating March 17 as the Irish are. History says part of this can be attributed to the rise of Irish patriotism among those who sought to move over from the continent to the United States.

That fervor — along with homesickness — was one reason why America saw St Patrick's Day parades on its streets so early in its urban history. The first parade marking the day was celebrated in 1737 in Boston, per Insider; while for New York City, its first parade was in 1772, when Irish soldiers (serving in the English military) took to the streets to honor the Apostle of Ireland. So you could even say America has been celebrating St. Patrick's Day before we became independent.

There are a number of things people who mark the holiday on St Patrick's day do — they dress in green (fun fact, it appears St Patricks' color is actually blue), they hit pubs and bars, they consume plenty of foods from colcannon to corned beef and Irish soda bread  and they raise a glass to the saint that made Ireland's existence as a country possible with a pint of Guinness.

The number of Guinness pints sold is in the millions

Guinness has been around for almost as long as St Patrick's Day marches have taken place in America. The stout, per The Spruce Eats, is made of barley, hops, water, and a special ale yeast aka "the Guinness yeast;" it was first brewed in Dublin, Ireland, at a facility owned by one Arthur Guinness, and which was founded in 1759. The brand first made its mark overseas in the early 1800s, and its push to expand beyond Ireland is credited as one of the reasons why it is one of the most successful beer brands in the world.

So how does this all translate into quantities of Guinness consumed? As Insider points out, St. Patrick's Day is one of the most popular drinking days in the country — fourth after New Year's Day, Christmas, and the Fourth of July. And according to WalletHub, people individually spend an average of about $43 on St. Patrick's Day, and while not all of that is spent on beer, it appears that a good amount of it is, as WalletHub also says that revelers around the world raise 13 million pints of Guinness each year on March 17. For Guinness, this represents an 819% increase on St. Patrick's Day over any other day of the year.