Saturday 24 August 2019

Sticky situation: Jam-maker's business hindered by dips in coverage

Helen Gee, owner of G’s Gourmet Jams in Abbeyleix, Co Laois. Photo: Steve Humphreys
Helen Gee, owner of G’s Gourmet Jams in Abbeyleix, Co Laois. Photo: Steve Humphreys
Fiona Dillon

Fiona Dillon

Jam-maker Helen Gee's business relies on broadband and she said there is definitely room for improvement when it comes to internet speed and connection.

Ms Gee, who founded G's Gourmet Jams 20 years ago, and is based in Ballypickas upper, in Abbeyleix, Co Laois, has seen a marked improvement in the past five years, but she said that the broadband connection drops once or twice a month for a couple of hours at a time, and it can be a bit slow.

She has noted that the internet connection can even be affected by windy or foggy weather.

"If you travel about a mile-and-a-half up the road, there is a dip, there is nothing at all, you wouldn't even get a signal for a phone call. It depends where you are.

"If you are driving through there and get a phone call, it just doesn't happen," she said.

Ms Gee said she would welcome faster broadband speeds nationally, as she pointed out all over Ireland there are dips in coverage.

"We get personal digital assistant's information from our van drivers doing deliveries, and sometimes if they are in a particular area without broadband, they can't send back their sales.

"They can't send the information back to us. They have to wait until they go to the next shop, so that kind of thing can lead to a delay for us getting the information back," she said.

Ms Gee said she gets a lot of orders online for jams, relishes and chutneys, and food services for hotels, restaurants and delis, and relies on broadband for stocktaking.

Irish Independent

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