People Spotlight: Maria Hester, Agriculture
Maria Hester is a Procurement Assistant for Kepak Group. Maria plays a big part in organising agriculture events we run throughout the year. Maria spoke to us for #IWD2020, learn more about Maria and her role as our Procurement Assistant here.
People Spotlight: Victoria Antoniades, Health & Nutrition
Ahead of #IWD2020, we spoke to Victoria Antoniades, Head of Marketing for Kepak Meat Division about her role within Kepak Group and her passion for Health & Nutrition. You can find out more about Victoria and her career with Kepak here.
People Spotlight: Kate O’Driscoll, Sustainability
Meet Kate, she leads the sustainability strategy for Kepak Group, where she helps to protect our environment. Kate spoke to us as part of our #IWD2020 series. Find out more about Kate and her role as Group Head of Sustainability.
People Spotlight: Elaine Bourke, Innovation
As part of our #IWD2020 series, we’d like to introduce you to our Innovation Director, Elaine Bourke. Elaine works tirelessly to make sure @KepakGroup remains one step ahead of the game.
Kepak backing Meath Ladies Gaelic Football Association
At Kepak Group we are delighted to announce a significant sponsorship deal with Meath Ladies Gaelic Football Association (LGFA) until the end of the 2022 season.
Kepak has been headquartered in Clonee, Co. Meath since the foundation of the company in 1981 and we remain committed and active in the local community. This sponsorship represents a new phase in our strong history with Gaelic games in Meath; Kepak and Meath GAA enjoyed one of the longest and most successful relationships in Gaelic football, featuring a 14-year sponsorship of the men’s team.
Our new partnership with Meath LGFA underscores Kepak’s commitment to supporting local communities, providing Meath LGFA with essential funding which will positively impact teams at every level. The agreement means our logo will reappear on Meath county jerseys and on new branding at Páirc Tailteann in Navan.
Kepak announce Welsh Black cattle scheme
Partnership with Welsh Black Cattle Society to provide a premium to suppliers
Kepak Group has today announced an exclusive scheme which will provide a premium to suppliers of quality Welsh Black cattle.
Kepak’s Welsh Black Beef Club, in partnership with the Welsh Black Cattle Society, will be based on the quality and sustainable supply of Welsh Black beef and promote the further development of the breed.
The scheme will be available from January 2020 to producers who can supply Welsh Black cattle that meet Kepak’s quality standards, including defined specifications and criteria yet to be confirmed.
A Look Inside Kepak’s 2019 Sustainability Report
Sustainability is More Important Now Than Ever Before
So, for a business that has grown from seven to 14 manufacturing sites across Ireland and the UK, and to offices worldwide, we’re well aware that it’s so important that we have a strong and robust sustainability strategy – one that ensures Kepak is doing its part across the whole value chain and beyond, from local communities to the wider world. We want to lead by example and that’s what you’ll see in our newly launched 2019 Sustainability Report.
“We at Kepak believe that sustainability should not be a side-line effort,” says Kate O’ Driscoll, Kepak’s Head of Sustainability, “It should be part of everything we do, a way of doing our job every day.”
Kepak Group Serving up ‘Sunday Roast’ to Those Affected by Homelessness
Kepak Group is pleased to announce it is to supply enough meat to table a ‘Sunday Roast’ to those affected by homelessness supported by the Simon Community at the charity’s primary city locations over the next year.
As part of its ‘Sunday Roast’ campaign, which was launched today by former ‘MasterChef’ judge Nick Munier, Kepak will be delivering a range of beef, lamb, pork and chicken products to Simon Community locations across Dublin, Cork and Limerick once a week for 12 months.
Kepak secures USDA approval to distribute Irish beef burgers in US
Irish brand becomes first European meat processor to access US burger market
Kepak Group has become the first ever European meat processor to be awarded United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) approval for the supply, marketing and distribution of Irish beef in a value-added format of beef burgers into the US market.
The approval announced today at Anuga, the world’s largest trade fair for food and beverages in Cologne, Germany, secures access for Kepak to the US beef burger market which is currently valued at over $122bn.
Kepak wins an outstanding 16 awards at the annual World Steak Challenge
Kepak Group has claimed a staggering 16 awards at the fifth-annual World Steak Challenge.
Kepak triumphed on home soil over stiff competition, not only from Ireland but from large beef-producing countries around the globe, as this year’s competition saw entries from 24 different nations, representing the biggest field of contestants in the competition’s history.
Welsh lamb producers showcase their skills as carcass event returns to St Merryn
St Merryn lamb producers once again had the opportunity to showcase their livestock selection skills as Kepak reinstated the lamb carcass competition at their site in Merthyr Tydfil last Tuesday (18th June).
The Hunt Is On For Ireland’s Best Burger
New research reveals that 70% of people believe Irish beef burgers are the best in the world *
It’s that time of year again, when burger-lovers across Ireland cast their votes to make the ultimate decision – who has Ireland’s best burger? Irish burger enthusiasts are being asked to cast their vote for their favourite burger to help celebrate National Burger Day, sponsored by Kepak, which takes place this year on 20th June.
Irish Food-to-Go market thrives as 72% of adults buy food and drinks to-go regularly
The Irish Food-to-Go market is thriving according to a new study, commissioned by Kepak Group, which has revealed that 99% percent of adults in Ireland have purchased food and drinks to-go.
The statistics show that the demand for food-on-the-go in Ireland is ahead of the market in the UK, where 60% of adults purchase food and drinks to-go on a regular (weekly+ basis) compared to 72% of adults who buy such products regularly in Ireland. And the market demands are increasing, with higher percentages of Irish millennials, Gen Z and Gen X making food-to-go purchases on a regular basis.
Glanbia Ireland and Kepak Group launch innovative new Twenty20 Beef Club
Glanbia Ireland (GI) and Kepak Group have today announced an ambitious and innovative new calf-to-beef programme.
The “Twenty20 Beef Club” affords Members a guaranteed market for their heifers and steers with a predictable and transparent pricing formula at time of slaughter; a production blueprint supported by safe and secure high-quality farm inputs and leading-edge technical advice.
For Kepak customers and consumers, the Twenty20 Beef Club will provide a secure and predictable supply of high-quality beef with unrivalled traceability and with the attributes of a “closed loop” supply chain.
Kepak backs first-of-its-kind Food-to-Go Summit
A first-of-its-kind international conference and trade show, supported by Kepak, is set to examine the future of the rapidly growing and evolving Food-To-Go market.
Taking place in the Round Room at Dublin’s Mansion House on 21 May 2019, the immersive, full-day event will gather together a panel of expert speakers, award-winning retailers and industry specialists. The conference will also include an Exhibitors’ Hall where suppliers will showcase some of the most exciting ideas, innovative concepts and trending products in the Food-To-Go space.
AgraKepak named Food & Beverage Exporter of the Year at Asia Matters Business Awards
AgraKepak, a worldwide export and trading division of Kepak Group, has been named Food & Beverage Exporter…
AgraKepak’s Journey at China’s Biggest Import Expo
Government ministers and officials were briefed on AgraKepak’s success and the development of marketing Irish pork and beef products into Chinese market, at the Bord Bia reception at the 2018 China International Import Expo (CIIE) recently.
At the reception, Jiang Bian and Xiaoming He of AgraKepak presented to Heather Humphreys, Minister for Business, Enterprise & Innovation; Andrew Doyle, Minister of State for Food, Forestry and Horticulture; Sinead McPhillips, Assistant Secretary, Agri-Food Sectoral Policy and Strategy Development; and Tara McCarthy, CEO Bord Bia.
Grab food to go profits with Kepak’s HOT new food concept
As dayparts continue to blur and snacking soars, Kepak is launching its new Goode & Tucker range in response to the growing demand from customers for hot grab-and-go options. The new range launches today (8 November 2018) at the IGD Food To Go Conference.
As a market leader in foodservice and the chilled convenience category, Kepak is bringing its experience and expertise to the food-to-go market with a ‘Foodvenience’ concept that blurs the lines between foodservice and retail.
Kepak beefs up CSR programme with meaty Simon Community partnership
Kepak to provide charity with enough meat for over 45,000 meals.
New partnership will reduce homelessness charity’s meat costs by 30%
Kepak Group is delighted to announce it has partnered with the Simon Community, providing free meat to the homelessness charity.
Over the next four months, Kepak will be delivering a range of beef, lamb, pork and chicken products to Simon Community locations across Dublin, Cork and Limerick. During this time, Kepak will donate some 4.2tonnes of meat to the Simon Community, reducing the charity’s meat costs by almost 30%.
Kepak at SIAL Paris 2018
Meet Kepak at SIAL Paris 2018 As We Unveil Our Latest Product Innovations. Come and visit us at Hall 6 Stand H216 to have a try of our latest product innovations: the first-ever Omega 3 enriched beef and our new ‘blended’ burger range in response to growing health & flexitarian trends.
Kepak launch first-ever Omega 3 enriched beef at SIAL
Other new product innovations being unveiled include a range of ‘blended burgers” in response to growing flexitarian trend.
Kepak Group is set to unveil its latest product innovation – the first Omega 3 enriched beef – this week at the influential Global Food Marketplace trade fair, SIAL, in France.
Kepak’s Omega 3 beef innovation was produced through a three-year collaboration with Alltech and is achieved by feeding cattle with a specialised algae supplement during the finishing phase. This means the beef reaches the required level of enrichment for Omega 3 accreditation.
Kepak Eyes Further Expansion into Chinese Market
Did you know that AgraKepak, the international trading division of Kepak Group, has been doing business in China and the rest of the Far East & South East Asia for 15 years?
The growing importance of the Asian markets to the business led Kepak to open its own office in China, located in Shanghai, in 2016. That office is managed & staffed by five Chinese nationals who intimately understand the needs of the Chinese market. AgraKepak’s China team has many years of experience in supplying the market with quality beef, pork, fish, lamb and poultry.
Kepak sweeps up seven awards at Blas na hEireann
Kepak Group has picked up seven awards at this year’s prestigious Blas na hEireann Irish Food Awards, including a Gold award for its newly launched Centra Irish Angus Sirloin Steaks with Pink Peppercorn Butter.
As one of Europe’s leading food innovators, Kepak was up against the top Irish producers in a range of distinct categories at the country’s biggest competition for quality produce. Now in its 11th year, Blas na hEireann, saw over 2500 products entered across 100 food and drink categories, showcasing the best producers Ireland has to offer.
RUSTLERS Third Level Football season launched
The 2018/19 season for Third Level Football was launched at the FAI National Training Centre on Monday September 24 with sponsors RUSTLERS continuing their promotion of all competitions for the second year.
Over 110 teams are set to put down their books and lace up their boots in the upcoming season of the Colleges and Universities Football League. The first ball is set to be kicked on Tuesday 9th October.
Kepak Group Acquires 2 Sisters UK Red Meat Business
Kepak Group has reached an agreement with Boparan Holdings, Limited, to acquire the UK business and assets of 2 Sisters Red Meat, Limited, for an undisclosed sum.
The acquisition will significantly increase Kepak’s value and scale providing a number of complementary strategic fits; it strengthens the Group’s key customer supply chain partnerships; it is both a Brexit and a €/£ hedge for the existing and the new Irish-UK businesses; it is a sustainable source of UK raw material for Kepak’s meat-based value-added businesses which are located both in Ireland and in the UK and which supply Irish, European and UK customers. Under the terms of the agreement, Kepak assumes control of the business with immediate effect.
Kepak Wins Impressive Nine Awards at The World Steak Challenge for A Second Year in a Row
Flying the flag for Ireland, Kepak beat off stiff competition from entrants from large beef-producing nations such as Japan, Brazil and the United States to take home gold and bronze accolades across a number of different categories. Kepak was awarded two gold medals at the competition in grass-fed categories; in addition to picking up an award for Celtic Beef, the business’ US brand.
Kepak Publishes Inaugural Sustainability Report
As part of its commitment to sustainability, Kepak is also working to significantly reduce water and energy usage, developing healthier products and share agricultural knowledge regarding on farm environmental awareness and biodiversity with farmers.
Kepak Group Signs €35m Contract with China-based Esen Agro Group
Kepak has signed a five-year distribution contract with China-based Esen Agro Group. The deal, which is valued at €35m, follows the recent announcement that Kepak’s Cavan-based pork and bacon producer McCarren Meats has been approved for exports to China.
The hunt has begun for Ireland’s best burger!
The hunt is on for Ireland’s best burger, as food lovers all over the country gear up for the first ever National Burger Day!
The nationwide event, which is sponsored by Kepak, and supported by Coca Cola, Heinz, Dubliner Cheese and Tour America will take place on June 21st with participating outlets all around the country marking the day by offering their customers a Buy on Get One Free exclusive offer on their signature burger.
Rustlers Puts In A Top Performance
Rustlers position as one of the UK’s top-performing FMCG brands has been confirmed in a definitive market report published by The Grocer magazine.
In its annual ‘Britain’s Biggest Brands’ survey, The Grocer reports that Rustlers has risen eight places, from 112 to 104, recording annual sales of almost £90 million, up 5.5% on last year (Nielsen Dec 2017).
Kepak to Serve Irish beef at Prestigious USA St Patrick’s Day Event
Taoiseach among high-profile guests at Good Friday Agreement commemoration
Despite being over 3,000 miles away, the Taoiseach will be enjoying the opportunity to savour the very best of Irish beef in Washington DC this week in the lead up to St Patrick’s Day. In accordance with the custom, Leo Varadkar will visit the President of the United States, Donald Trump, in the White House, but not before taking part in a number of key events.
Kepak Partners with Guinness on New Food Offering for Irish Pubs and Bars
Kepak has partnered with world-renowned Irish brand Guinness to create a new slow-cooked range for bar and hospitality industry.
The new products, some of which have been created using the famed Irish stout, will be showcased at Hospitality Expo 2018.
Bláthnaid Ni Fhátharta, Marketing Director for Kepak Foodservice & Corporate Communications, said:
“The face of the Irish bar sector has changed dramatically in recent years, and as a result, licensees have had to evolve and adapt their offering to keep up with ever-changing consumer demands and the evolution of eating and drinking habits out of home. This range was specifically developed with the publican in mind, this will allow them to offer world-class menu items without the hassle. In combining the brand pull of Guinness with a range of traditional, favourite dishes, Kepak have produced a unique offering that’s perfect for the licensed trade.”
Kepak Launches Innovative Loyalty Programme for Foodservice Operators
Kepak has launched a new online customer loyalty programme that adds an innovative dimension for trade customers when ordering Kepak/Big Al’s Foodservice branded products.
‘Food Alliance’ rewards selected Kepak foodservice customers such as food-to-go retailers, fast food operators, pubs, restaurants, coffee shops and hotels with points which can be redeemed for a fantastic range of personal and business items such as catering equipment, digital marketing tools, spa breaks, family fun days, holidays and much more. Operators can also donate their points to the Jack & Jill foundation and Kepak will match their donation.
Kepak Group acquires Moy Park Poppintree plant
Acquisition further increases Kepak capability in added value cooked products
Kepak Group has announced that it is to acquire the Moy Park Poppintree facility in Ballymun, Dublin 11. The acquisition is expected to be completed by the end of December. The Poppintree factory was custom built in 1995 and has been the subject of significant investment in cooking processes that complement the Kepak Group’s value added business interests.
Ireland’s foodservice market continues to grow
Ireland’s foodservice market continues to grow and is now valued at a record €7.8billion, comprising over 33,000 individual outlets. This is according to a 2017 Irish Foodservice Channel Insights Report from Bord Bia which was released at its annual foodservice seminar which we attended yesterday in the Aviva Stadium, Dublin.
Kepak Claims Gold at Irish Food Service Awards
Kepak wins best product across all categories and product ranges.
Tuesday, November 1st, 2017 – Kepak has scooped two awards with Musgraves Marketplace at this year’s Irish Foodservice Quality Food Awards.
Kepak Group Contributing €35m Annually to Cavan Economy
Kepak Group has revealed it is now contributing more than €35million annually to the local economy in Cavan through pork and bacon producer McCarren Meats; an increase of 50% since it acquired the business in 2013. Kepak has also revealed that process capabilities and throughout capacities at McCarren Meats have increased by 40% following a €15million investment in the facility by the company. Kepak, best known as a primary processor of beef and lamb, diversified into pork production with the acquisition of a majority shareholding in McCarren Meats in 2013. Staff levels at McCarren Meats have since increased by almost 40%, from 194 in 2013 to 269 currently.
Speaking at a media and stakeholder event in Cavan, John Horgan, Managing Director, Kepak Group, said: “Kepak diversified into pork for the first time in 2013 with the acquisition of a majority shareholding in McCarren Meats. Through that acquisition as well as more recent investments including Greene Farm Fine Foods in Westmeath and U.K. based Country Park Foods (CPF) – both of which have pork value-added cooking and processing capabilities, Kepak is heralding a major expansion of its value-added business.
Antimicrobial Resistance Action Plan
Kepak welcomes and supports the launch of Ireland’s National Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR). This National Action Plan was developed in line with the objectives of the World Health Organisation (WHO) global initiative to combat the misuse of antibiotics.
AMR is a growing issue in both human and animal health care. Kepak support the responsible and prudent use of antibiotics. From an animal welfare perspective where they need to be administered for specific ailments; adopting a balanced and proportionate response focused on infection and disease control.
Rustlers Announce AFC FYLDE Sponsorship
RUSTLERS has recently announced a deal with AFC Fylde, a professional football team based in Kirkham, to become an Official Club Partner and Sponsor of the men’s senior team. The brand will
feature on the shorts of the Senior Men’s Team who have had enjoyed a relatively good start to their season so far.
RUSTLERS will also partner with the AFC Fylde Community Foundation to become ‘The Principle Physical Activity Partner’ which will see up to 4,000 secondary school pupils in Lancashire benefit from the new partnership which aims to increase participation in physical activity for 16 – 24 year olds throughout Preston, Blackpool and Fylde.
Kepak to ‘taste the future’ at world’s largest trade fair
Kepak will be ‘tasting the future’ this week at the world’s largest and most important trade fair for the food and beverage industry, Anuga, which will open its doors on Saturday 7th October 2017 in Cologne, Germany.
More than 40 Kepak representatives will join 160,000 enthusiastic visitors who will discover the latest and most innovative products from more than 7,400 exhibitors and be inspired by the world’s largest range of products.
Rustlers Announced As Title Sponsor of 3rd Level Football In Ireland
RUSTLERS has been announced as the new title sponsors of the FAI’s Third Level football league for the 2017/18 season.
With over 110 teams set to compete in the upcoming season, it promises to be another exciting campaign as both the men’s and women’s teams will play their games under the banner of the RUSTLERS Colleges and Universities Football League. In June, RUSTLERS announced a four year sponsorship that sees the brand become an official sponsor of the FAI, the Republic of Ireland soccer team and the title sponsor of the RUSTLERS Colleges and Universities Football League.
Kepak scoops 11 awards at Blas na hEireann
Tuesday, October 3rd, 2017 – Kepak has scooped a whopping 11 awards at this year’s prestigious Blas na hEireann Irish Food Awards.Kepak beat off stiff competition from other Irish producers to take home a range of accolades across several distinct categories, including the ‘Best in Leinster’ and ‘Best in Meath’ titles. Now in its 10th year, Blas
Kepak Clonee Receives USDA Aproval
Kepak Clonee was listed as a USDA approved plant in June giving Kepak Group four USDA approved plants out of a total of 10 approved beef plants in Ireland. Kepak Kilbeggan and Longford
were the first EU plants to be approved under the scheme, while Kepak Athleague has also been approved.
Kepak has also become the first plant in Ireland to gain approval to the newly established PVP scheme with Bord Bia.
Rustlers Announced Title Sponsor Of Irish Football League
RUSTLERS has been announced as the new title sponsors of the FAI’s Third Level football league for the 2017/18 season.
With over 110 teams set to compete in the upcoming season, it promises to be another exciting campaign as both the men’s and women’s teams will play their games under the banner of the RUSTLERS Colleges and Universities Football League.
Celebrities Provide Boost For Greene Farm
Green Farm has just come off the back of a hugely successful summer campaign for the brand. The campaign was inspired by the brand’s passion of convenience, versatility and naturally free from additives, gluten and …. Hassle. The campaign was designed to appeal to our target audience while creating awareness and engagement with the brand, after a period of little activity.
Greene Farm are delighted to team up with Niamh Kavanagh winner of Celebrity Master Chef and TV personality Baz Ashmazy. This partnership allowed the Greene farm brand direct access to thousands of social media followers and provide fun and relevant content to them.
Why visit the Irish Angus Producer Group at the Ploughing?
Miriam O’Callaghan, Minister Helen McEntee, secondary school student competition, elite Irish Angus cattle and more!
Irish Angus Producer Group’s stand at this year’s National Ploughing Championships will celebrate 50 years of the Irish Angus Cattle Society the fact that Irish Angus is now the biggest pedigree breed in the country.
SideKicks Prank Campaign Packs A Punch
To raise awareness of the product amongst consumers of the recently launched SideKicks range a prank video and radio advertisement have been created. The video packs a real punch for those who were pranked – people stitched up by friends at a fake food tasting. The video was released on Balls.ie and College Times to a followership of over 600,000. An accompanying 20-second radio advertisement has also been rolled out across Irish stations including 98fm, iRadio, RedFM and many more.
#BIGITUP with Big Al’s
During the summer, Big Al’s launched a massive campaign to encourage burger lovers to #BIGITUP with our new delicious Prime Burger. Big Al’s kicked off the campaign with a launch party in Meeting House Square Temple Bar styled as a trendy ‘back garden BBQ’ party. Big Al’s rolled in the #BIGITUP Truck to serve up gourmet offerings of the New Prime Burger to more than 100+ attendees at the event. Music for the party was provided by DJ Deece (Niall D’Arcy) who’s headlined events like Electric Picnic and Boiler Room.
Kepak Group host flagship events at the International Congress of Meat Science & Technology
Kepak is set to host two of the flagship events taking place as part of the 63rd International Congress of Meat Science and Technology being held in Cork this week (13th-17th August).
In addition to a robust programme on thought provoking topics of global interest, over 400 delegates can look forward to an array of informative events and technical tours such as the Kepak sponsored visit to Teagasc Moorpark (where they will sample grass fed Irish beef from Kepak Cork), and a technical tour of Kepak Cork, Kepak’s flagship site where delegates will be shown best practice in meat processing covering topics from animal welfare to slow cooking of meats.