UK-Wide Asda contract for local food companies
In a major boost for Northern Ireland’s agri-food sector, two local businesses – Finnebrogue in Downpatrick and Karro Food Group in Cookstown – have partnered to secure a sizzling £multi-million UK contract with Asda to supply its entire range of Extra Special sausages and hot dogs.
The biggest own label contract to be won by any Northern Ireland Asda supplier to date – with an estimated 3 million packs set to sell throughout the summer months alone – the Extra Special sausage range will be available in over 400 stores across the UK.
The growth of its own-label supply contracts has also resulted in job creation at Finnebrogue, which has recruited 60 new staff to help it meet product demand.
The Extra Special range developed for Asda includes 22 different product lines ranging from New York City inspired Hot Dog Sausages to hot Louisiana Cajun Spiced Sausages and smoky sweet Tennessee Barbeque Pork Sausages.
Top quality pork sourced from high-welfare farms across Northern Ireland is initially prepared at Karro Food Group’s Cookstown plant. The meat is then transferred to the multi award-winning Finnebrogue estate in Downpatrick where the sausages are hand-made in small batches.
Jim Viggars, head of meat quality for Asda said, “This is a highly significant contract and we’re delighted to have announced the details at the Balmoral Show – the showcase event for Northern Ireland’s local agri-food sector. The partnership between Finnebrogue and Karro Food Group pays testament to the skills of NI’s farming community, the expertise of the local food processing sector and the quality of the region’s raw materials.”
“While we’ve worked with both Finnebrogue and Karro on an individual basis, it is fantastic to see how they’ve collaborated to produce superior quality products which complement and enhance our Extra Special range.”
Denis Lynn from Finnebrogue added: “We are and will always remain an artisan food producer and we’re delighted that our innovative approach and quality-focus remains at the core of this new supply contract. This is also reflected in our partnership with Karro Food Group which, together with our transparent sourcing policies and welfare-friendly practices, delivers a highly sustainable premium sausage range for Asda customers across the UK.”