SuperValu calls on local producers to join its Food Academy
Since 2013 Food Academy producers have generated €170m in sales in SuperValu stores nationwide
6 April 2021
SuperValu is calling on small food and drinks producers around the country to enter its Food Academy programme.
Now in its eighth-year, Food Academy is a unique food business development programme between SuperValu, Bord Bia and the Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs). Participants in the programme receive training in food safety, market research and branding, marketing, finance, sustainability and business development.
The Food Academy programme currently supports 290 Irish food and drink producers including 140 female entrepreneurs, generating €170m in sales. In 2020, there was a 15% growth in SuperValu Food Academy sales with participants earning €28m. The Food Academy programme supports 1,500 jobs in local communities nationwide.
“At SuperValu we believe in local business and are proud to continue to support local producers across the country,” said Carmel Biggane, Food Academy manager, SuperValu. “In collaboration with the Local Enterprise Office Network and Bord Bia, the Food Academy is a great way for us to help new businesses to grow and get the support they need.
“The programme allows us to use our experience to help small businesses through their journey from start up to getting their products on our shelves all year round,” she added. “We’ve had great success with the Food Academy in recent years, we look forward to welcoming new producers this year and continuing to support local communities. I would call on local food producers across Ireland to get involved and see how Food Academy can help you grow.”
Welcoming the increase in Food Academy sales through SuperValu in 2020, Tómas Hayes of the Local Enterprise Offices said: “Since it was started up eight years ago by the Local Enterprise Offices, SuperValu and Bord Bia, the Food Academy programme has been hugely successful, going from strength to strength. It has helped hundreds of up-and-coming food producers to get their products market-ready, giving them an opportunity to sell to a nationwide audience.”
“The Food Academy is part of a suite of Local Enterprise Office supports aimed at food and drink entrepreneurs in Ireland, such as the Digital School of Food and Food Starter programmes, both aimed at getting those with food ideas off the ground,” he added. “As food and drink producers around the country grow their sales through these programmes, the Local Enterprise Offices are on hand to support their expansion plans through further training, mentoring and financial assistance.”
The Food Academy Programme is now open for applications until Friday, 23 April 2021. To apply, interested food and drink producers are encouraged to contact your Local Enterprise Office for an application form on www.LocalEnterprise.ie.
For more information on Food Academy, visit: https://supervalu.ie/real-people/food-academy-programme.