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IRISH EXAMINER: Digital campaign to get shoppers buying local produce

May 19, 2020 Profiles and Interviews

By Ray Ryan

Love Irish Food had a great line-up planned for the Bloom festival in Dublin during the June bank holiday weekend, but that has been cancelled as a result of Covid-19 It has instead started an eight-day digitally led, community-based campaign, which will continue until this Thursday with a view to getting the nation behind supporting Irish food during this unique time.

Love Irish Food says it wants to bring the spirit of community food festivals to people at home, with a ‘Bite of Summer’.

Executive director Kieran Rumley said shoppers have become increasingly aware of local Irish food producers in recent weeks.

“These producers have, and will, continue to provide great continuity of supply to Irish supermarkets. We depend on them and greatly value the service that they provide. Over the coming months these local companies will continue to keep the shelves stocked and keep local communities working together,” he said.

Over 40 Love Irish food brands are promoting brands through its website and its Facebook page. Love Irish Food was founded in 2009 when a group of Irish brand came together.

It aims to help shoppers make informed choices with an overall ambition to safeguard the future of Irish food and drink manufacturing and protect jobs.

Meanwhile, Agriculture Food and Marine Minister Michael Creed has said balancing payments of over €1m are being paid to 1,200 organic farmers two weeks earlier than last year

“Getting this money directly info farmer’s pockets is a key part of our Covid-19 response and will help to improve cashflow on Irish farms,” he said.

Mr Creed said the scheme is a key support measure that assists organic farmers in responding to the increasing consumer demand for organically produced food.

At present, there are 1,530 organic farmers participating in the Organic Farming Scheme with annual payments amounting to €10m.

Mr Creed said that the scheme has resulted in a 50% increase in land farmed organically in Ireland to over 74,000 hectares with ambitious plans for its development.

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