independent

Monday 20 November 2017

Wicklow Rapeseed Oil joins Bord Bia's academy

Keith Symes of Wicklow Rapeseed Oil
Keith Symes of Wicklow Rapeseed Oil

Deborah Coleman

A home-grown Wicklow food product has been selected for inclusion on this year's FoodService Academy coordinated by Bord Bia and Musgrave MarketPlace.

Wicklow Rapeseed Oil is among 11 products to be chosen this year along with sustainably grown seaweed and whiskey-flavoured popcorn.

The company is run by Keith Symes in Hawkstown Lower, Wicklow and produces a number of products including extra virgin and flavoured rapeseed oils.

The initiative which helps participants to grow sales withing the food service industry also offers the opportunity to achieve growth within Musgrave MarketPlace's foodservice business, supplying over 6,000 customers each week ranging from hotels and restaurants to pubs and nursing homes.

Coordinated by Bord Bia and now in its second year, FoodService Academy will take place over four months and comprise of both workshops and mentoring. Representatives from Musgrave MarketPlace will participate in the workshops, sharing invaluable practical insights and experience to help the companies better understand areas such as supplier set-up, food safety requirements and distribution model as well as sales and marketing support.

Launching this year's programme, Maureen Gahan, Bord Bia's Foodservice Specialist, said 'Foodservice in Ireland offers major opportunities for suppliers providing innovative products and solutions to meet changing consumer needs. We're delighted to roll out the second year of our 'FoodService Academy' initiative, supporting our belief that food businesses should increasingly look to the foodservice sector as a viable route to market. Now worth €7.5bn and forecast to grow to over €9bn by 2020, this route to market is delivering real growth and value for Irish food and drink companies.'

Sheena Forde, Trading Director, Musgrave MarketPlace added that, 'Following on from the success of our FoodService Academy last year and that of the SuperValu Food Academy, we are now looking forward to the second year of our programme to support Irish foodservice producers through Musgrave MarketPlace. A number of the participating companies are Food Academy graduates so we are proud to be in a position to help grow their businesses by introducing their products to our foodservice customer base. As the largest and fastest growing wholesaler in Ireland, we are ideally placed to understand the needs of the foodservice market and, as an Irish family business, we are delighted to work with small Irish companies, many of which are family owned, to give them a head start in the market.'

Wicklow People

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