Promising future for Kilkenny’s food sector

Pictured are the Foodpreneurs team at Kilkenny Castle. From left to right are Eddie Neill – O Neill Food Solutions, Chef Brian McDermott, Marian Flannery – Savour Kilkenny, Catherine Hennessy – LEO Kilkenny, Colm Foley – Bia Innovator Campus, John Mulcahy – LEO Kilkenny

The annual Savour Kilkenny Food Festival kicked-off on Thursday 27th October with a special event aimed at food product development for food business. ‘Foodpreneurs – Food Product Development’ was organized by Local Enterprise Office Kilkenny to give people the opportunity to learn from industry leaders and gain insightful information into the sector.

Guest speakers on the day included Chef Brian McDermott, Eddie O’Neill of O’Neill Food Solutions, Colm Foley of BIA Innovator Campus Galway, Sarah Gough of Mileeven, and Pat Fitzgerald of Fitzgeralds Nurseries Ltd. The morning session at the Parade Tower, Kilkenny Castle also included Q&A’s and a comprehensive overview of the supports available was presented by Senior Enterprise Development Officer (Acting), Catherine Hennessy.

Catherine Hennessy said “We were really pleased with the success of the event with people in attendance from such diverse backgrounds and interests. The future for the food sector in the City & County is looking bright with some brilliantly talented and innovated people who want to bring something new and exciting to the County.”

Marian Flannery, Savour Kilkenny, Festival Director, said “We were delighted when the Local Enterprise Office Kilkenny listened to our proposals for this event and came on board with Savour Kilkenny to organize and fund this inspiring morning event. What a fantastic way to kick-off our 2022 festival. The speakers each shared their own experiences in a very honest and engaging way and left all guests with great enthusiasm and energized to continue on their food business journeys.”

Marian Flannery added “Huge thanks to the Local Enterprise Office Kilkenny for their support on this partnership. It’s vitally important to work together to give budding entrepreneurs the access they need to opinion leaders and industry experts. I have no doubt that people left the event with helpful tips and advice which they’ll be able to incorporate into their business plans and we’d like to thank the brilliant speakers for their input. If anyone is interested in starting a food business or looking at developing a new food product, we highly recommend getting in touch with Local Enterprise Office Kilkenny who have some wonderful supports available.”

Aileen McGrath, Head of Enterprise (Acting), Local Enterprise Office Kilkenny, said “We were delighted to work in partnership with Savour Kilkenny on this event and it was great to see such an interest in the event. Savour Kilkenny has had an important role over the last decade, shining a light on local food producers, produce and restaurants, cafes and bistros which is in line with the Kilkenny Food Vision 2020-2025. This vision looks to make Kilkenny, Ireland’s strongest local food economy and food culture hub and to increase the amount of local food and beverages on menus and retail shelves in the county.”

This year, Savour Kilkenny hosted a jam-packed festival including a variety of events such as live cookery demonstrations, talks, workshops, dining events, children and family events and a busting market to sip and Savour Kilkenny’s local produce. The festival welcomed a host of celebrity chefs, local chefs and TV personalities including Derry Clarke, Rory O’Connell, Daniel Lambert, Freddie White, Grainne Mullins, Maria Walsh and Catherine O Keefe.


Previous Get moving with Zincuflex
Next Hard times as many are cutting back on spend