Going swimmingly

Birds Eye Fish Fingers are Ireland’s best selling fish fingers
Birds Eye Fish Fingers are Ireland’s best selling fish fingers

Positive signs for future sales abound within the fish category, where the natural fish sector is currently experiencing +11% growth. Gillian Hamill reports.


Brand Central

20 June 2011

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Fish1The overall value of the Irish seafood sector is worth €700 million annually and BIM, the Irish Sea Fisheries Board, estimates that an additional €50 million in value added seafood sales can be created by 2012.  The industry already employs 11,000 people and it is on target to create 3,000 new jobs by 2020. The latest figures from BIM also show that pre-pack fresh fish now accounts for 68% of the total fresh fish market in Ireland.

Perfect growth

Birds Eye has continued its strong performance in the fish category, growing its share from 21% to 24% in less than two years (AC Nielsen MAT 20 Feb 2011).  The growth has been driven by a combination of driving core products like Birds Eye Fish Fingers and launching successful NPD such as Birds Eye’s Bake to Perfection Range and re-launching into the coated fish category.

Birds Eye Fish Fingers are Ireland’s best selling fish fingers with almost 80% market share. 

Launched in October 2009, the Birds Eye Bake to Perfection range has turned the natural fish sector from -15% decline to +11% growth (AC Nielsen 26th Dec 2010) and is now worth over €2.45m making it one of the most successful launches in recent years in the frozen fish category.

Birds Eye Bake to Perfection is a range of fish fillets and seafood varieties each complimented with a sauce.  Each variant comes with two individually wrapped portions and Birds Eye’s innovative packing technology “Bake Perfect bag” prevents the fish from drying out during the cooking process while preventing unwanted aroma.

Birds Eye will continue to support the Bake to Perfection range with a new heavyweight TV campaign, commencing in time for the key fish period around Lent.

Regal taste of premium Irish seafood

An acclaimed family-run County Clare food business has proven that its premium smoked seafood is genuinely ‘fit for royalty’.
Award-winning artisan food producer, The Burren Smokehouse, is relishing the prestige of being selected to provide a platter of fine smoked Irish salmon delicacies, for the state dinner recently held to honour Queen Elizabeth II at Dublin Castle.
The platter was exclusively hand-smoked by Birgitta Curtin at her traditional smokehouse near Lisdoonvarna, and included both Burren Smoked Irish Salmon and Clare Island Organic Irish salmon.

Burren Smokehouse Organic Irish salmon and a range of other premium smoked fish products are available at select food halls and delicatessens across Ireland, UK and Europe and are shipped internationally via the company’s online store.
For more information about The Burren Smokehouse, see www.burrensmokehouse.ie.

Extensively certified

A shellfish business with production facilities in West Cork and Co. Kerry has secured a lucrative sales agreement to supply select Tesco outlets across the country.

The Kush Shellfish brand is now available at 14 select Tesco stores throughout Ireland. The announcement comes in addition to sales listings in Dunnes Stores, SuperValu and Superquinn, for Ireland’s first certified organic rope mussel producer.

Company managing director, John Harrington, says the recent sales agreement with Tesco is a direct result of the growing consumer demand for premium quality Irish shellfish.

Kush Shellfish has been proactive in relation to developing convenient packaging and easy-to-follow instructions that make home-preparation simple.

The company has been awarded GT Certification for its organic rope mussels and for overall high standards of shellfish production. Kush Shellfish built on this by gaining EU-approved organic status and the prestigious Naturland and Bio Suisse certs. It is now the most extensively certified company for organic shellfish production in Europe. As well as this, it participates in a strict biotoxin monitoring initiative that is overseen by the Marine Institute of Ireland.

For more information about Kush Shellfish see www.kush.ie.

Onto a microwaveable winner

An innovative new seafood product developed by Keohanes of Bantry with the assistance of BIM’s Seafood Development Centre (SDC) has led to the creation of 12 new jobs for the west Cork company.

The new product is a microwaveable fresh fish product, the first of its kind in Ireland and has been eagerly taken up by many of the multiples since its creation.  Projected sales over the next three years are valued at €3 million as the company targets customers both on the home market and abroad.  

The innovative packaging on the product allows for extended shelflife up to ten days once it hits the shelf.  It also allows for ease of handling for the consumer and provides complete visibility of the freshness of the fish.  Many of the products come with complimentary flavoured butters and sauces and cover a wide range of species including salmon, prawns and various whitefish as seasons allow. 

BIM Seafood Circle Award winners excel

Ireland’s wealth of top class seafood restaurants and retail outlets recently received a ringing endorsement from BIM, the Irish Sea Fisheries Board, as the BIM Seafood Circle 2011 Almost 200 Seafood Circle members for 2011 were listed in addition to Quinlan’s Kerry Fish in Tralee winning the Seafood Specialist of the Year Award, Scally’s SuperValu, Clonakilty winning Supermarket Seafood Counter of the Year and Fishy Fishy Café in Kinsale banking Seafood Restaurant of the Year 2011.
In 2011, all of the Superquinn counters retained membership and SuperValu seafood counters nationwide are now on board. For a full members listing log on to www.seafoodcircle.ie or www.bim.ie.



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