27 June 2016
By Elaine Murphy
- Announcement made at the first day of the 2016 Cork and Kerry Food Forum which was attended by more than 5,000 people in Cork
- Producers on the Food Academy Programme supporting 900 jobs
- 281 Food Academy producers are selling their product SuperValu stores
- 37 Food Academy producers exhibited at the Cork & Kerry Food Forum
It was announced at the Cork and Kerry Food Forum that retail sales from companies supported by the Food Academy programme are expected to top €25 million in 2016. The Food Academy Programme is a partnership initiative between SuperValu, Bord Bia and the Local Enterprise Offices (LEO) Network, and works with and nurtures small food businesses from start up to getting their products onto supermarket shelves.
More than 5,000 attended the first day of the Cork and Kerry Food Forum, and thousands more are expected to attend the second day today at City Hall Cork. The 2-day event, which features one of the largest artisan food market in Ireland, is supported by a partnership of the Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs) in Cork and Kerry, Cork City Council, Cork County Council, Kerry County Council, SuperValu and Bord Bia.
Speaking at the event, Martin Kelleher, SuperValu Managing Director, said: “I am delighted to announce that sales from the Food Academy Programme are expected to top €25 million this year. 281 Food Academy producers are currently selling their products in SuperValu stores across Ireland, with these producers supporting more than 900 jobs nationally. Small food businesses play a vital role in the Irish economy and SuperValu are delighted to support these local producers.”
“The Food Academy was established to support passionate and entrepreneurial food producers in Ireland. This unique joint initiative has proven hugely successful, as evidenced by the phenomenal 2016 sales figures announced today by SuperValu. We are delighted to have our Food Academy producers at the Cork and Kerry Food Forum, this event is about showcasing the incredible offerings from the Cork and Kerry Region,” said Joe Burke, LEO South Cork.
Guest chefs at the Cork and Kerry Food Forum included David and Stephen Flynn of The Happy Pear. The identical twins, who are also SuperValu Good Food Karma ambassadors, shared their vegan and wholesome approach to eating, their favourite recipes through hugely popular free cookery demonstrations and their philosophy of making natural and healthy food mainstream.
The free event will take place again today, Monday 27 of June from 12 – 5pm in Cork City Hall, with cookery demonstrations by one of Ireland’s best-loved chefs and SuperValu ambassador, Kevin Dundon. A chef with a love of locally-sourced indigenous produce, Kevin Dundon will cook a specially crafted healthy recipe using ingredients from Food Academy producers.