Lidl Ireland gives small Irish food producers a kickstart
Introducing 70 Irish products as part of its renowned Kickstart Supplier Development Programme
10 August 2021 | 0
Lidl Ireland is introducing more than 70 homegrown Irish products to shelves across its 210 stores island wide for a limited-edition all-Ireland promotion starting 12 August. The diverse and delicious range celebrates the very best of Irish produce from 43 small indigenous suppliers participating in the retailer’s fifth annual supplier development programme, Kickstart.
The range complements Lidl Ireland’s current portfolio of Irish products sourced from its existing network of more than 260 local suppliers, with highlights including superfood seaweed sprinkles from Co. Clare, sustainable plant-based chocolate bars from Co. Kerry, poetry-inspired craft beers from Co. Monaghan and much, much more.
Showing its continued commitment to supporting local, particularly over the past 18 months of the pandemic, Lidl Ireland has invested more than €6 million in its Kickstart Supplier Development Programme since it first started in 2017. Supported by Bord Bia, the programme was designed to give small and medium-sized Irish food and drink businesses the opportunity to advance their product, brand, and business with dedicated support from field experts along the way. Now in its fifth year, Kickstart has empowered hundreds of amazing Irish artisan suppliers to showcase their produce on Lidl’s national platform exposing them to 2 million customers. There are countless supplier success stories to tell, including many suppliers going on to secure permanent contracts with the retailer.
Echoing Bord Bia’s support for Lidl’s Kickstart Supplier Development Programme, Bord Bia CEO, Tara McCarthy said: “There is no doubt that while it has been a challenging period for the Irish food industry, we are also witnessing some excellent examples of resilience in the face of adversity. It is heartening to see indigenous producers experiencing growth in the past months as a result of heightened consumer demand for Irish products. This shows that key supports, such as Lidl Ireland’s annual Kickstart Supplier Development Programme, are key drivers in that growth, giving small local producers the skill sets to upscale and grow their businesses, making homegrown produce accessible on a national level.”
Innovative products from this year’s Kickstart range include:
Wild Irish Seaweed Seasoning Jars, €4.99 each – Seaweed has become a coveted superfood, seen as a more natural way to add a burst of extra vitamins and minerals to your diet, as well as some flavour. Although a relatively new phenomenon in the modern Irish food market, Clare-based seaweed harvesters, Wild Irish Seaweed, have been supplying seaweed for more than 100 years across 4 generations. Currently ran by Evan Talty and his family, the small-scale operation has been in business since 1920 when Evan’s grandfather and great grandfather worked in the local seaweed factory. Despite the industry fading out for a lengthy period, the Talty family revived their handed-down family business in 2009 and began supplying seaweed to local shops and markets before joining Lidl’s latest Kickstart programme, which will see their seaweed sprinkles in Cara Green, Nori, Sea Salad, Dillisk and Komnu variants go on sale in Lidl stores island wide from 12th August.
Skelligs Chocolate Cocoa Bean Bars, €2.99 each – The story behind Skelligs Chocolate Cocoa Bean Bars is as rich as its flavours; Orange, Salted Caramel, Mint and Maple & Pecan. Each plant-based bar is made using a unique 54% cocoa recipe which gives a ‘middle of the road’ finish as a light, almost dark type of chocolate. Cocoa Bean Bar creator, Darren O’Connor, is a passionate person who has tried his hand at all walks of life, from working as an animator to opening a sky diving school to running a dog crèche before he finally found his true calling in 2015 when he began making chocolate to sell in his father-in-law’s local shop. Darren decided to infuse his interests in the plant-based world with his newfound passion for chocolate, developing an environmentally-friendly product that still tastes amazing and comes in 100% recyclable packaging.
Brehon Brewhouse Craft Beers, €2.79 each – Brehon Brewhouse from Co. Monaghan brings together two of Ireland’s greatest cultural delights into one bottle: poetry and craft beer. Stemming from a dream-driven conversation between family members over the dinner table one night, Monaghan dairy farmer, Seamus McMahon set up a small 10-barrel brewery on the family farm. Inspired by famous local poet, Patrick Kavanagh, who grew up beside Seamus’s grandmother, Brehon Brewhouse is deeply rooted in Irish heritage. Crafted in stories, Brehon Brewhouse’s beers are quirkily named after Kavanagh’s poems with Raglan Road Red Ale, Apollo Indian Pale Ale, Black Hills Oatmeal Stout, Brennan’s Blonde Ale, Fair Day Pale Ale all featuring in this special Kickstart promotion.
Lidl Ireland is proud to support local Irish suppliers and to bring the best of Irish produce to homes from Bantry through to Belfast. This limited-edition Kickstart promotion launches in all 210 Lidl stores across Ireland and Northern Ireland from 12 August and is available while stocks last only, so make sure to check out the range in your local Lidl and support these small Irish producers.
Given the ongoing success of the programme, Lidl Ireland is again calling on Irish food and drink, and for the first time, non-food producers, that want to boost their business to apply now for its 2022 Kickstart Supplier Development Programme at www.lidl.ie/kickstart. Once applications close at the end of year, Lidl Ireland will carefully choose a selection of suppliers to take part in the programme with their products to feature on Lidl’s shelves next summer.