NI Winners Announced In Irish Food Awards

The export focus of the five local companies which were successful at last weekend's Irish Food Awards were praised by Barry McBride, Invest Northern Ireland Director of Business International.

Two local companies gained major category awards in the event, known as Blas na hEireann, that attracted over 2,000 product entries from companies in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Invest NI sponsored the best new product award for the first time.

A total of 18 Northern Ireland companies were shortlisted by the expert judging panel.

Other category sponsors of the event, held as part of the Dingle Food Festival in Co Kerry, included Enterprise Ireland, Bord Bia and Bank of Ireland.

The major winners from Northern Ireland were:

Hannan Meats, Moira, for Export Achievement for its highly innovative Guanciale Italian style bacon product, which was also recently named Supreme Champion in the UK Great Taste Awards; and

DJ's Juices and Ciders, Lisburn, named Supreme Champion in the Cider category for its Tempted! brand strawberry cider.

Other Northern Ireland winners in the 50 categories were:

Fivemiletown Creamery, Tyrone - silver award in the Soft Cheese category for the natural Irish goat’s cheese it supplies SuperValu;

Thompson's Family Teas (Punjana), Belfast - silver in Teas and Coffees for its Titanic Tea; Blackthorn Foods, Belfast - bronze in the Confectionery category for its unique Fudge Fondue dips.

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