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Minister Coveney Launches Inaugural Regional Food Showcase in the Southeast

- Regional Food Companies important towards building Ireland’s Food Identity  -

Speaking today at the launch of a regional food showcase for the South East in the Lyrath House Hotel, Kilkenny the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney TD, said that food companies and producers were key to a strong regional economy and national growth.  There is a great vibrancy in regional and local production and this sector is important towards building the food identity of Ireland the Food Island.

"This South East event grouping Carlow, Kilkenny, Tipperary Waterford and Wexford is a practical opportunity for key food buyers to meet companies and see the products of 60 of the Region's food producers" he said. “The South East has a strong tradition in producing high quality food products. Events such as this increase awareness of local food strengths, stimulate business to business links and so generate additional sales and jobs right here in the Region."

The Minister welcomed the initiative of his Department and Bord Bia who have joined with Enterprise Ireland, County Enterprise Boards, Teagasc and Leader to support a cross section of small and medium food producers in the South East Region, representing a wide range of food and drink products at various stages of development. Buyers from both the retail and food service sectors were present to view products, meet producers and hear findings of research into the South East food economy. A regional food directory of food companies in the South East counties was also launched as part of the event.

"This is the first in a series of Regional Food-Showcases which have been planned with Bord Bia" the Minister said.  "It follows on the ambitious targets for smart green growth in the Food Harvest 2020 strategy."

Note for editors

The research carried out on behalf of Bord Bia on regional potential for local food manufacturers in the South East provides interesting insights into the opportunities that exist for food producers in the Region -

 

  • Retail and Foodservice outlets in the region are spending more than €30m weekly on food.
  • Market understanding, product differentiation and high service levels are critical areas for producers to concentrate on as they try to build business in the region.
  • The research work has yielded a directory of almost 1,400 outlets for producers in the region with the vast majority of these being “very interested” in sourcing products from the region.
  • Bord Bia have also put together a directory of over 200 producers from the Region.

Date Released: 20 June 2011