Wednesday 20 September 2017

Ballymaloe cookery school serves up profits of €250k

Darina Allen
Darina Allen
TASTE TEST: Brendan O'Connor with Cookbook of the Year 2013 winner Darina Allen
Darina Allen will be holding a workshop at this year's Wild & Slow festival

Gordon Deegan

THE world renowned Ballymaloe Cookery School served up tasty profits last year that nearly topped €250,000.

The driving force behind the school, Darina Allen, said yesterday that she was happy with how it performed last year.

Ms Allen was commenting on new accounts just filed by Ballymaloe Cookery School Ltd with the Companies Office that show that its accumulated profits last year increased by €246,556 from €2.013m to €2.26m in the 12 months to the end of August 31.

This followed the school at Shanagarry in Co Cork recording profits of €233,396 in 2012.

"We promise less, but give more by giving 120pc in everything we do," said Ms Allen.

"It has been great to be able to make a profit in the economic climate that is there and that is tribute to the staff here."

A total of 72 people are employed at the school and Ms Allen attributed the success of the school "to hard work and we love what we do".

The main driver of its success is the 12-week cookery course that costs participants €10,695.

The course runs three times a year and if the 60-place course is fully subscribed, it can generate revenues of €1.925m for the school per annum.

She said that people came from all over the world to Ballymaloe to participate in the course with 56 sitting the current one. The school offers a range of courses with TV chef Rachel Allen one of the lecturers.

Meanwhile, big names from the 'foodie' world congregated in Ballymaloe Litfest at the weekend and Ms Allen said the weekend was a great success.

"There was hardly a bed between here and Cork city. We had people from 18 different counties here and people specially travelling from the likes of Russia, Australia and Vietnam for the event," she said.

Documents show that the 65-year old founder of the business retains a 50pc share with members of the Allen family owning the other half.

Ms Allen said that Ireland was now confident enough to be the gastronomic centre of the world.

She explained: "We have incredible produce and I am very optimistic about the food sector here."

Irish Independent

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