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Winners of the Bord Bia Irish Food & Drinks Industry Awards 2013

The achievements and contributions of nine Irish food companies were recognised at the Bord Bia Food and Drink Awards held in the Royal Hospital Kilmainham tonight. The Awards, which are held every two years, are designed to reward excellence within the Irish food and drink industry across seven categories – Exporting, Branding, Entrepreneurial, Success at Home, Sustainability, Consumer Insight and Innovation. Over 250 industry representatives gathered for the event including the CEOs from some of Ireland’s leading food and drink companies such as Kerry, Glanbia, Irish Distillers, ABP, Dawn Meats and Kepak.

Opening the event the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Mr. Simon Coveney T.D. said “As ever with the food and drink industry, we are here to celebrate exceptional resilience and performance at the ‘Oscars’ of the sector. Individual food and drink companies, who are being recognised this evening, can take pride in their achievements in growth, in new business and even deeper insight into buyer needs and consumer trends.”

Irish Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Mr. Simon Coveney T.D.
The Minister added “at a macro level, the record €9 billion exports achieved by food and drink companies in 2012 is likely to be surpassed this year, and the €12 billion target in Food Harvest 2020 is in sight. The opening up of new markets has been a key policy priority. Together with the successful conclusion of CAP and Common Fisheries Policy negotiations during the Irish Presidency, this provides greater certainty for food and drink businesses seeking to expand business sustainably on the Origin Green journey. “

Speaking at the event, Michael Carey, Chairman, Bord Bia said “This year’s Awards coincide with the fourth successive year of sustained growth in our food and drink exports. As the industry continues to develop and expand into new and emerging markets, it is important to recognise the continued progress and achievements of the sector.”

Category Award Winners
The Bord Bia Food and Drink Awards were open to all food and drink products manufactured in Ireland. This year, Bord Bia received in excess of 140 award entries across seven categories which were judged by an independent judging panel. The overall category award winners were:

Glenmar Shellfish, Winner of the Export Award
Export Award – Glenmar Shellfish. Based in Union Hall, Co. Cork and established over 30 years ago, Glenmar is currently exporting over 2,000 tonnes of shellfish each year to markets such as China, Hong Kong, Korea, Italy, Spain, France and Croatia. They export to seven overseas markets on a daily basis and exports account for 75% of company turnover.

Paganini for FitFuel, Winner of the Innovation Award
Innovation Award – Paganini for FitFuel, a protein enriched ice cream range. FitFuel Perform is a recovery product for sportspeople and recreational athletes, while FitFuel Nourish is used by healthcare professionals to boost the protein intake of patients. Paganini was founded by Wexford dairy farmer, Tomas Murphy in 1990 and today, in addition to its business in Ireland, they export to the UK and the Middle East.

Britvic Ireland for MiWadi, Winner of the Success At Home Award
Success at Home Award – Britvic Ireland for MiWadi, the number one dilute brand in Ireland. Miwadi impressed the judges with a 41% yearly average value market share, having achieved considerable success in recent years with the relaunch of MiWadi, and the launch of double concentrate and no added sugar flavours.

Dawn Meats, Winner of the Sustainability Award
Sustainability Award – Dawn Meats, the Waterford based meat exporter, has formalised its approach to sustainability and set a number of demanding targets as part of Origin Green, Bord Bia’s sustainability development programme for the Irish food and drink industry. Dawn Meats is working to reduce water use by 40%, reduce energy consumption by 40% and to reduce its direct carbon footprint by 50%.

Keelings, Winner of the Branding Award
Branding Award – Keelings, the family owned fresh produce business started producing fruits and salads in the 1930's and today the company employs approximately 2,000 people and has a turnover of €300 million per year. The Keelings brand, with its strapline “Love to Grow”, was launched into the produce category in 2010 and has become the most recognised brand for fruit and vegetables in Irish supermarkets.

Irish Sea Salt, Winner of the Entrepreneurial Award
Entrepreneurial Award – Irish Atlantic Salt. The O'Neill family developed this range of organic, gourmet Irish sea salt products, using the highest quality waters around the Beara Peninsula to create the only Irish-made white sea salt product available. By 2015, the company hopes export market revenues will represent 80% of total revenues.

Kerry Foods Cheestrings, Winner of the Consumer Insight Award
Consumer Insight Award – Kerry Foods for Cheestrings, a brand, worth approximately €90 million, and available in over 25,000 stores around the world. The judges were particularly impressed by the detailed consumer research undertaken by Kerry in advance of entering the German market. The resultant consumer insight helped build its product positioning which has led to 1 million packs being sold every month in leading German retailers.

Special Awards

James Whelan Butchers, Winner of a Special Online Champion Award
This year, Bord Bia introduced a new Award to reward an ‘Online Champion’, in recognition of the impact the digital age is having on the industry. Pat Whelan of James Whelan Butchers, Ireland’s first online butcher, was awarded the title as a ‘best in class’ example of how to increase sales and brand awareness through online and social media.

ABP Foods (Irl.), Winner of the Business Referral Award
Meanwhile, ABP Ireland was also honoured with the inaugural ‘Business Referral Award’, in recognition of their co-opetition efforts. Bord Bia is actively supporting the principle of co-opetition, where food companies work together to create synergies resulting in cost savings, improved returns and reputation, and increased market distribution. ABP Ireland introduced Wexford based sheep meat company, Irish Country Meats, to a European foodservice client in order to address a supply issue for their customer. Irish Country Meats now deliver Irish lamb weekly to this foodservice client.

Congratulating the award winners, Aidan Cotter, Chief Executive, Bord Bia described their achievements as “a fitting showcase of an industry on the rise, building success at home and abroad, and positioning food and drink firmly at the centre of our economic recovery. It is this talent, imagination and sheer professionalism that is at the heart of the industry’s current success and that will secure its continued growth and expansion”.


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