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Pork Farmers to Launch Truly Irish Brand

by 5m Editor
25 August 2009, at 10:08am

IRELAND - A company formed by Irish pork farmers to protect and promote their industry will formally launch its Truly Irish Country Foods brand at Mitchelstown Food Festival this coming weekend.

The North South Pig Company comprises 140 producers, some of whom have been supplying pork to the industry for over four generations, reports IrishExaminer.com.

It was formed over three years ago and now has a range of Bord Bia quality marked and approved rashers, sausages and cooked hams available in supermarkets under the Truly Irish Country Foods brand.

The ethos of the company, which has its headquarters in Charleville, is to return a better share of the retail margin to the pig farmer.

Retail sales of pork, bacon and sausages in Ireland were valued at €425 million at consumer prices in 2007. Up to 8,000 are employed directly and indirectly in the industry.

Some 70 per cent of the country’s pork producers are shareholders in the new company, which guarantees its products are 100 per cent Irish.

Mitchelstown pig producer Rory O’Brien, a director of the company, said the results have so far proved extremely beneficial for all concerned.

"Our sausages are 82 per cent meat and our rashers are low in salt and don’t shrink when cooked. We are giving people a quality Irish product which we believe is value for money.

"A full marketing campaign will start in six weeks. The initial plan is to get local shops to stock the Truly Irish range and raise awareness," he said.

Mr O’Brien said what the producers are trying to do is help secure their future. Truly Irish has been in the supermarkets about 10 weeks.

"We are confident in our product and we are confident it will be a success," he said, as plans went ahead for the formal launch of the brand in Mitchelstown on Sunday, with entertainer Jon Kenny doing the honours.

Bringing Home the Bacon will be the title theme of the festival which begins on Friday and continues until Sunday, when Professor Paul Ross of Teagasc will perform the official opening.

There will be a large producers’ market at a 20,000sq ft indoor premises in Coolnanave Business Park on the main Dublin road, across from the Firgrove Hotel. For generations, Mitchelstown has been synonymous with the production of high quality pork products and this will be highlighted and promoted over the weekend.

Activities will include a workshop, talks, demonstrations and a Mitchelstown Lions Club family fun day on Saturday, followed by an open air BBQ and street carnival.