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We’re quite fond of listing impressive numbers on this blog, so the launch of Centra’s Own Brand range was a great opportunity to highlight some really good ones: 900 products, 150 suppliers, 460 participating Centra stores nationwide and sales of €40 million achieved since its launch in April. It’s also the biggest product launch in Centra’s 34 year history – an €8 million investment.

But, however positive a tale they tell, are these really the numbers that matter? Modern consumers can be wary of figures that don’t really tell them more – and they may have a point. They may for instance ask: “Is Own Brand good for Ireland as well as Centra?”

Well, one answer is that the launch of this extensive range of Own Brand products helps the Irish consumer save money. More importantly perhaps, it also supports local businesses and job creation. It’s not just about a new range, therefore, but new – or renewed – supplier contracts with Irish companies.

Mulrines is one such. A company that has been operating in Donegal for almost a century and that employs more than 150 people locally, Mulrines produces a range of quality juices for Centra and has been awarded a contract valued at over €1.2 million.

Munster Soft Drinks and Carlow-based Sunshine Juices Limited are other contract winners. In fact the relevant figures for Irish companies involved in Centra Own Brand are 110 Irish suppliers out of a total of 150 and projected retail sales in 2013 for those Irish companies of over €150 million.

So take your pick: a boost for Centra, a boost for consumers or a boost for the Irish suppliers? We like to think that this story really does have something for everyone!

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