26 January 2021
By Elaine Murphy
Ballymaloe Foods is planning to increase its focus on the pasta sauce market this year with a significant investment.
Figures show that the branded pasta sauce market in Ireland is worth €24.6 million (up to end of October 2020). Also pasta with sauce is the most popular meal eaten by children and the third most popular adult meal in Ireland according to – “What Ireland Ate Last Night” (Bord Bia 2020). Figures also show that 80% of households in Ireland are buying pasta sauces so it is an essential category for so many people when they are shopping.
Just one in 20 branded pasta sauces sold in Ireland is an Irish pasta sauce. Ballymaloe Foods has big ambitions to double this by the end of 2021. Ballymaloe Foods pasta sauces are the fastest growing pasta sauces in the Irish market. (Kantar 2020)
Ballymaloe Foods is also focused on reducing their use of soft plastic. In 2020 they reduced the amount of soft plastic they use in their supply chain by 1.3 tonnes – the equivalent of a blue whale. They have plans to reduce this further in 2021 and have changed from plastic packaging for their pasta sauces to glass jars.
General Manager at Ballymaloe Foods, Maxine Hyde said: “The Irish pasta sauce market is heavily influenced by international brands but we want to see more people reaching for an Irish product when they find themselves in front of the shelf in supermarkets. We are very excited to significantly invest in this market in 2021. Our pasta sauces are Irish made with all natural ingredients. We also have the fastest growing pasta sauce brand in Ireland and it is amazing to see this level of support in the market from consumers. Over the last year we have seen so many new consumers starting to use some of our products and pasta sauces have proved a huge hit.”
Ballymaloe Foods is also planning to expand its online shop this year. In 2020 they launched an online shop as they had received lots of queries from people who had family who couldn’t make it home for Christmas but wanted to have a taste of home.
Maxine added: “Even though this is currently a small side of the business for us, it is exciting to be expanding how we are reaching our consumers.”