Magherafelt bakery Genesis have scooped another major accolade - winning gold in the Irish Food and Drink Awards.
The bakery owned by the McErlain family, struck gold with their double butter fruit scone in the prestigious awards
Invest Northern Ireland is among the sponsors of the awards, as it is of the UK Great Taste Awards. Invest NI presented a prize for the Best New Product 2014, which was won by a business in the Republic.
John Hood, Invest NI Director of Food and Tourism, congratulating the local award winners, said: “It’s been another excellent year for Northern Ireland in many major categories. The Irish Food and Drink Awards showcase the quality and innovation underpinning the Northern Ireland entrants. They also highlight the export potential of the award winners especially in the Republic of Ireland.
“Our marketing teams will continue to work closely with the winning companies, both large and small, to help them to turn success in these highly influential awards into sales in the Republic, Britain and further afield. We’ll also be encouraging many other food businesses to grasp the business opportunities provided by Blas.
“We know that the buying decisions of major retailers in the Republic and elsewhere are influenced by success at the Irish Food and Drink Awards as well as the recent Great Taste Awards, which also saw a record breaking performance by our companies.”
The awards were open to all Irish companies. The products were tasted by panels of selected judges in two tranches resulting in the winning products being awarded gold, silver and bronze as well as some key awards such as Best in Farmers Market and Chef’s Choice.
The Blas awards are the biggest blind tasting of produce on the island of Ireland, and the criteria on which the product is judged as well as the judging system itself, which was developed by Blas na hEireann with the Food Science Dept of UCC, is now recognised as an international industry standard.