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Did You Know? March 19, 2014

By Publications Checkout
Did You Know? March 19, 2014

Did you know… Irish Distillers has launched a whiskey discovery experience at its academy in Cork? The two day event will assist experts and enthusiasts to learn more about whiskey production and its history. Participants will learn how to craft whiskey from start to finish, as well as blend, and getting to try and distill their own whiskey. Irish Distillers director Peter Morehead said, “Irish whiskey is now the fastest growing spirits category globally. It achieved double-digit growth last year. We want to educate people about the craft of Irish whiskey, the history and the heritage.” The event is interactive and unique to the Midleton distillery as single pot still whiskey is not made anywhere else in the world, according to Morehead.

Did you know… The US has formally lifted its ban on EU beef? The ban on EU meat has been in place since 1997 during the BSE crisis. Commenting, Ulster Farmers Union (UFU) Beef and Lamb Chairman Robert Davidson said, “At last the US has finally removed their unjustified import ban on EU beef and recognised our low BSE risk status. This should be good news for the industry in allowing us, along with the rest of the UK, Ireland and Netherlands to export beef and veal to the US.” Davidson said that the official lift of the ban came following the fourth round of EU-US talks for a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. However, he added, “We remain extremely concerned that the beef industry will be sacrificed in favour of other trade opportunities during these discussions and through COPA we have been lobbying strenuously to ensure this does not happen, as it could have a significantly detrimental impact on the EU beef industry. What will be important for us is that the market doesn’t become flooded with US beef.”

Did you know… Largo Foods is closing its Donegal manufacturing facility? The crisp manufacturer plans to move production from its factory in Gweedore to Ashborne, County Meath, with the loss of 140 jobs (110 full time, 30 part time). Largo chief executive Maurice Hickey said the move is necessary to help reduce costs for the company and increase competitiveness. “We are competing with major companies in the UK. They have greater scale than us, which makes it difficult for us to compete in production cost per unit. It is costly to transport raw materials to Gweedore due to the location and to transport the finished product.” The factory in Gweedore is due to close by August, with redundancies commencing in May. 

Did you know… A museum dedicated to Irish whiskey looks set to be completed by the end of the summer? The museum, the first of its kind in this country, will be located at College Green in Dublin and is funded by a €2 million investment in the project. The history of Ireland's most famous whiskey brands will be on display for visitors at the museum, which will employ around 25 people. The Irish Whiskey Museum is a sister company of Extreme Ireland, a tour company running since 2006. 

Did you know… The granting of planning permission for an Aldi store in Cashel has been delayed? The Tipperary store plans have been halted by An Bord Pleanala due to appeals as the issue “is complex”, and as such will take longer than anticipated to investigate. A spokesperson for An Bord Pleanala said “It is a statutory objective of the Board to ensure that every appeal received is determined within 18 weeks beginning on the date of receipt of that appeal. Where it appears to the Board that it would not be possible or appropriate to determine a particular appeal within this period, a notice must be sent to the parties in accordance with the Act. The Bord aims to give a decision on the appeal by April 26.


Did you know... Innocent drinks has launched a new variation in its smoothie range? Available from April, the range will highlight the health benefits rather than the ingredients of the drink, focusing on terms such as as ‘energise’, ‘defence’ and ‘antioxidant’, and the fact that there are 250 calories in each bottle. Dave Pickup, Innocent UK managing director, says the range is likely to appeal to existing Innocent drinkers but will also help to bring new consumers into the category and the Innocent brand. “We have been making smoothies for 15 years now and we are always looking for new ways to excite and invigorate the category. Our innovative new super smoothie range is for those drinkers looking for more from their drink.” Innocent plans to support the new range by investing in experiential, digital, print, in-store marketing, sampling and promotions.

Did you know... The Irish Food Writers’ Guild Food Awards 2014 awarded six out of seven awards to County Cork food producers? In its 20th year, the (IFWG) Food Awards recognise and reward producers of the highest quality food together with industry stalwarts who devote their lives to supporting and promoting Irish food. This year’s winners were Cork’s Ballyhoura Mountain Mushrooms; Coolea Matured Farmhouse Cheese, Irish Atlantic Sea Salt, Stonewell Cider and Heritage Irish Potato Collection. An Environmental Award was presented to Responsible Irish Fish for its commitment to the development of sustainable fishing practices. The awards were presented at L’Ecrivain Restaurant in Dublin, with a meal specially prepared with the winner’s ingredients by celebrity chef Derry Clarke. 

Did you know… Shellfish De La Mer have recalled a number of Seafood products? The Cork-based Seafood supplier recalled its Cooked Mussels Meats, including Chowder Mix (2kg), Uncooked Chowder Mix (with mussels, 1kg), Frozen Seafood Chowder Mix with Mussels & Prawns (1kg), Irish Seafood Chowder Mix (180g), Seafood Mix (2 kg) and Mussel Meat (1kg). The recall followed reports of illnesses associated with diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP). Shellfish De La Mer Ltd is recalling batches of frozen products that contain the implicated mussels. The products were supplied mainly to caterers directly or via wholesalers. Food businesses are requested to remove the affected batches from sale. If any of the implicated batches were sold at retail level, a point of sale notice should be clearly displayed informing customers not to eat the implicated products. Please also advise the Food Safety Authority of Ireland at [email protected] of any retail sales.

Did you know… Dingle Distillery is targeting the US market with its Irish gin? The Kerry- based distillery has partnered with importer A Hardy, an American company, to distribute its gin across the US. The Dingle Gin was officially launched in the Fraunces Tavern in New York last weekend. Oliver Hughes, founder of the Dingle Distillery said the US is the first market for the gin for export. “A Hardy USA is an importer with 120 distributors across the States. Our product should be nationwide there within the next six months. We are targeting a premium market in the US. It is a competitive area but there is space,” he said. The distillery began making gin and vodka in October 2012 and is currently sold in almost 200 specialist off-licences and bars in Ireland. Dingle Distillery hopes to launch its vodka brand in the US later in the year also. 

© 2014 - Checkout Magazine by Genna Patterson

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