KERRY Group have been named as Ireland's biggest exporters in country's entire food and drink sector and the eight biggest exporter in the state.
The Tralee based multinational food giant was listed in eighth position on the The Irish Exporters Association 2013 Top 250 Exporters in Ireland and Northern Ireland list which was published last week.
In the 2013 Top 250 Exporters listing the Kerry Group is the largest exporter in the food and drink sector, followed by Glanbia Plc in second position and Irish Diary Bord taking up the third slot.
According to the listing Kerry Group exported goods with a combined value of over €5.694 billion last year.
In its report the IEA noted that Kerry, which now has more than 24,000 employees, has become more focused on servicing the food industry rather than actually producing food.
Through its ingredients and flavours division, which accounted for 79 per cent of the groups 2012 profits, the company has become a world leader in complex processes such as product reformulation, a technique that helps clients alter the recipe of their product while maintaining attributes like taste and texture.
Kerry Group was one of two Kerry-based companies contained in the top 250 list. Killarney based Liebherr Container Cranes, a subsidiary of German manufacturing group Liebherr Group, came in at 119 on the list with total exports of €172 million in 2012.