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Did You Know? April 23, 2014

By Publications Checkout
Did You Know? April 23, 2014

Did you know…The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine announced a package of measures to help the beef industry? Minister Simon Coveney, hosted a forum in Dublin Castle on Friday to bring together beef processors, farm organisations and groups like Teagasc and Bord Bia to discuss the recent issues involving cattle prices between factories and farmers. Coveney aims to introduce a free ‘beef price watch’ online tool to make price information available to farmers. He will also ensure that a meeting is held every three months under his chairmanship to exchange information on market developments and discuss forecasts on supply, demand, prices and retail changes to avoid a similar issue arising again. In addition, Bord Bia will be commencing a new €500,000 fund to promote Irish beef in the UK and Northern Ireland and encourage cross-border trade.

Did you know… Dunnes director Margaret Heffernan has ended her directorship at property firm Silverwood Developments? Heffernan founded the company in 2003 alongside her brother Frank, who remains as a director of the company, alongside family members Anne Heffernan and Sharon McMahon. The business is responsible for the management of the property portfolio of the Dunnes family. Heffernan turned 72 on March 9th, however there is no indication that she intends to relinquish her directorship of the wider Dunnes business just yet.

Did you know… Northern Irish Brewbot, the smart brewing technology created by Cargo Design in Belfast, now boasts export business in the US, Canada, Europe, Australia, South Africa and Taiwan? Brewbot, a craft brewing system that is controlled by a computer and can be monitored and managed by smartphone, has won £200,000 worth of business from customers in export markets. Jonny Campbell, Brewbot Design Lead, said, “What our technology does is to make it possible to brew consistently high quality beer at home with the help of a smartphone app. Our technology takes all the hassle from craft brewing such as water measurements, timing and temperatures and enables brewers to control the process effectively using the mobile internet. Our package includes advice on recipes and ingredients and guidance on the brewing process from start to finish.” Brewbot was launched in 2013 by the Cargo team, based at Exchange Place in Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter, comprising founder Chris McClelland, Jonny Campbell, Keenan Graham, Matthew Dick, Ali Sisk and Aaron Gilmore.

Did you know… Aurivo has reported a record turnover of €454 million for 2013, up 11% on the €407 million reported the previous year? Formerly known as Connacht Gold, the Sligo-based business said operating profit increased by 199% to €5.2 million from €1.7 million, while pre-tax profits total €4.9 million, up from €1.1 million in 2012. Chief executive Aaron Forde said, “It is gratifying to report on what was a transformational year for the business in terms of both financial and operational performance.” The increase has been attributed to a combination of the added milk volumes in strong dairy markets, increased feed volumes and strong performance from investments. In addition Aurivo’s net debt decreased by 33% to €12.9 million and shareholder funds increased 13% to €38.7 million, from €34.1 million the previous year. Aurivo’s butter brands increased sales by 15% and its dairy ingredients recorded sales of €125 million. Forde said, “2013 was a year of achievement and progress in the deployment of a strategic model that provides a robust basis for continued growth across our business, and enhanced value to our owners in the in the years ahead. 2014 has started well for Aurivo and I can say with some conviction that we look to future years with renewed confidence.” Aurivo expects to grow its milk supply by 20% once the milk quotas are abolished in April 2015. 

Did you know… The Irish League of Credit Unions' ‘What's Left’ tracker survey has found that there has been a rise in the number of people who have €100 or less left after bills have been paid each month? The survey estimates that 1.696 million people have €100 or less left at the end of the month once all the bills are paid, an increase of 32,000 on the December 2013 figure of 1.664 million. Meanwhile, 1.154 million have €50 or less left at the end of the month once all the bills are paid, which is an increase of 56,000 on the December 2013 figure of 1.098 million, with 470,000 left with nothing at the end of the month, a decline of 10,000 since December 2013. Nonetheless, there has been a 5% increase in the number of people who are in a position to save, now at 44%, which in April 2013 was at 39%. The average amount of money saved is now at €177, up from €170 in April 2013 and a rise from €175 in December 2013.


Did you know…. Tesco Express in Bray, County Wicklow has sold for €2.7 million demonstrating an initial net yield of 8.6%? The buyer is a private Irish investor, represented by Aidan Scully of Investi, who is now seeking to let the vacant first floor. The Boulevard, Quinsborough Road store has a passing rent of €242,850 a year, with Tesco paying €120,000, or 49% of it annually. Approximately 90% of the total income is from Government agencies and Tesco, who are on a 25-year lease from 2010, with a break in 2024. Occupiers in the Boulevard include The Health Store, FAS Employment agency and Wicklow Citizens Information and other occupiers on the street include Dunnes, An Post, KFC.

Did you know... The inaugural National Parenting Product Survey and Awards (NPPA) 2014 have been launched? The awards were set up by Zahra Media Group, publisher of Easy Parenting magazine and the Ultimate Maternity Guide, in association with Millward Brown, a global research agency. Gina Miltiadou, Managing Director of Zahra Media Group said, “Based on our experience in the parenting market, we had long felt that there was a gap in the market for a transparent and credible award system that would independently and rigidly test parenting products and would result in a consolidated and reliable source of product information for parents.” The awards span 84 categories, including such categories as Feeding Products, Home, Playtime/ Entertainment, Baby Skincare and Bathtime. The closing date for applications is the May 16, and the competition can be entered online at 

Did you know… Senator Jim Walsh has called on the government to introduce a code to protect fruit and vegetable farmers in Wexford from below-cost selling? The Senator said that farmers were on the verge of going out of business before Christmas due to the low-cost selling of fruit and veg by supermarkets, and says its time for decisive action to ensure fair prices to farmers. “Many producers are already under pressure financially without having their prices slashed by large multiples. The Government has stood back and done nothing while these growers fight for their survival. Three years have passed since the Bill was first approved and it's unacceptable to expect producers to wait much longer to see it enacted,” he said. In particular Senator Walsh thinks that the Bill section on price regulation should be fast-tracked to save jobs at risk, especially in the south-east region. 

Did you know… Michael O’Leary has said that small farmers should not receive subsidies from the EU? The Ryanair chief executive has called small farms "uneconomic" and should have their subsidies eliminated, but he believes so should "very rich people", like himself. O’Leary told Midlands Radio, “I am not a great supporter of the EU subsidies, even though I am a significant recipient,” admitting that his farm in Westmeath receives up to €80,000 in subsidies, which he believes is “ultimately wrong”. O’Leary said that the EU agricultural subsidies need to be restructured, but does not hold much hope for it actually happening. He said, “They should be restructured, but equally, whereas I am not a great supporter of rich people receiving subsidies, I also would be very opposed to very small people who are farming what are sub-economic units, 10 and 20 acre farms, receiving subsidies. Ultimately, they can't survive and they can't make a living on those non-economic units.”

Did you know… Keogh's Crisps has secured a deal to supply Tesco stores in the UK, with the artisan crisp maker set to supply product to 255 stores? "This is a brilliant boost for us," said Keogh's managing director Tom Keogh. "As a small, family-owned business, this deal with Tesco UK opens a potentially massive opportunity for the business. The announcement was made yesterday by Tom Keogh alongside Tom Hayes TD, Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and John Paul O’Reilly, Commercial Director, Tesco Ireland.


© 2014 - Checkout Magazine by Genna Patterson

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