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Weekly Round Up, November 19, 2013

By Publications Checkout
Weekly Round Up, November 19, 2013


Fitfuel Protein Ice Cream has been officially launched on the Irish market, after winning the Innovation Award at last week's Bord Bia Food & Drink Awards 2013. FitFuel Perform is a new Irish protein enriched dairy ice cream and has been developed specifically for fitness enthusiasts. Irish rugby player Fergus McFadden said at the launch, “This is a really innovative product, for many recreational athletes it’s a dream come true, an Irish fitness ice cream as a post workout snack.” FitFuel Perform Protein Ice Cream is currently available in Vanilla and Strawberry flavour and can be purchased in a selection of supermarkets and speciality stores throughout Dublin and Wexford including Pettitt’s Supervalu, selected Spar outlets and Donnybrook Fair. 

Cash & Carry operator M & P O'Sullivan Limited has posted a slight decrease in its profit after tax in the year to end 31 December 2012, according to accounts just filed. The Cork-based wholesaler posted profit after-tax of €412,000, compared to €456,456 last year. Turnover at the group for the period stood at €21.04 million, down from €22.18 million a year earlier. In their report, directors for the company said that the "group experienced a decrease in turnover as a consequence of a difficult business environment."

Crewe-based convenience group Conviviality Retail, which operates the Bargain Booze chain, has appointed Musgrave Retail Partners GB trading director Kenton Burchell as its new commercial director, commencing in March 2014. The appointment follows that of Julie Wirth, former finance director at Musgrave GB, who commenced her role as CFO at Conviviality last week. Burchell was promoted to the role of trading director last year, having spent 13 years with the company in a variety of roles, including head of trading operations with responsibility for the Budgens and Londis brands, working closely with Musgrave Retail Partners GB managing director Donal Horgan.

Aramark Ireland has won the Workplace Mediation Award 2013, held by the Mediators Institute of Ireland (MII). Caroline Costigan, HR Director, Aramark Ireland said, “Mediation in the workplace is an area that is receiving growing recognition from organisations in recent years and at Aramark we have taken a lead in introducing mediation in our company. Since introducing our mediation programme we have seen a direct impact with employees very open to engaging in the process so as to resolve issues in a non-confrontational manner.” Over the past number of years, Aramark has developed a small team of trained mediators within its HR department to support the resolution of workplace issues such as allegations of bullying, harassment and so on.


Green Giant has launched a new pre-packed range of fresh vegetables and salads in Ireland, called Green Giant Fresh. The new range includes seven products, packaged in re-sealable bags. Included in the range are Mighty Crisp Gem Hearts, Crunchable Bite Sized Cucumber, Juicy Sweet Pear Tomatoes, Sweet Crunch Baby Broccoli, Crunchy Quick Celery Sticks, Crisp and Light Cosmo Lettuce and Seedless Sweet Snack Peppers. Priced from €1.50 to €2.50, the Green Giant Fresh range is available at Spar, Eurospar, Mace, XL and Londis stores nationwide. Plans are already in place to extend the range to other major retailers over the coming months.

Retail Excellence Ireland and eTail Excellence Ireland have raised concerns about credit card hacking and fraud. While there are very positive online sales growth figures of 25% YOY growth, the groups said that 7% of all orders are estimated to be fraudulent, with an estimated loss of €320m this year, and up to €551m by 2016. Sheila Buckley, Head of eTail Excellence Ireland said, “If we don’t tackle online fraud, the Irish Economy is set to lose up to €500m a year by 2016, with the cost of fraud to an individual online business at an estimated €90,000 a year.” Buckley said that Irish eTailers are currently behind the international curve for online trading and are missing a massive revenue and jobs growth opportunity in the eCom sector in Ireland. 

The Dairygold co-op expects the milk supply to increase by 57% or an extra 540 million litres of milk by 2020 from the 2011 base. With over 500 days to go to the abolition of the milk quotas, Jim Woulfe, Chief Executive of Dairygold said, “Dairygold are investing to ensure they have the capacity to process this additional milk and have committed to accepting all extra milk produced by their suppliers in their catchment area.” Speaking at the Teagasc National Dairy Conference, Woulfe called the changes favourable and said that the Irish Dairy Board price for dairy products is expected to average at the equivalent of 37.5 cent per litre for 2013, the highest ever average price. Tom O’Dwyer, Teagasc Head of Dairy Knowledge Transfer said, “You have to get better before you get bigger. We need to be very careful about the amount of money we invest. Irish dairy farmers cannot afford higher costs, poor investments and unnecessary debts.” 

Agri-services group Origin Enterprises saw revenues fall by 12.5% in the first quarter of its financial year. Revenue was down to €307.3 million due to lower global fertiliser and feed prices, with sales falling by 7.9% in the three months to October 26 on an underlying basis, excluding currency impact. However, the Valeo Foods group, which Origin co-owns with CapVest, was seen to deliver a solid performance. Origin says it has made good progress in building an integrated and intelligence-led agri-services business capability, saying it is "well positioned to capitalise on the provision of innovation and technology transfer for the sustainable development of primary crop enterprises.” The company anticipates diluted earnings per share for the current financial year to be nearly in line with the 2013 financial year. 

Tesco has recalled batches of its own brand Chocolate & Nut Ice cream cones in Ireland and the UK after two pain relief tablets were found in two individual cones. The grocery giant has recalled the product and asked that customers refrain from eating the product, and return it to a store for a full refund. A Tesco spokesperson said, “‘We are urgently investigating this incident with our supplier and ask customers to return this product to their local store.” No other Tesco products are known to be affected at this stage. The Food Safety Authority of Ireland has listed the recall on its website.


The ECR Ireland Supply Chain Summit was held last Wednesday in the Citywest Hotel, Co. Dublin. Hosted by ECR Ireland chairman Declan Carolan, the event’s aim was to set the context for working together in the Irish Supply Chain, reporting progress from the product availability and shared logistics streams and examine potential collaborative projects. Speakers included Luke Hanlon from Musgrave Retail Partners, David Berry from Kantar Worldpanel and David McGee from PwC among others. The event was open to those working in the supply chain, retailers, manufacturers, buyers and managers across the trade. 

© 2013 - Checkout Magazine by Genna Patterson

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