New SuperValu store opens in Athlone

€5 Million Investment and 55 New Jobs

A new SuperValu store on Ballymahon Road, Athlone officially opened today. The 10,000 square feet store, which local retailer Mary Croughan will operate, represents a total investment of €5.3 million and the creation of 55 new jobs.

Today’s announcement marks the second SuperValu store opening this month; the retailer celebrated the opening of its first Newbridge store in early September, creating 70 new jobs and representing an investment of €2.2 million. These developments are indicative of the growing momentum behind the SuperValu brand, with the retailer investing €18 million in store developments in 2015, adding 280 jobs to the SuperValu network. SuperValu now serves over 2.6 million customers every week and has 223 stores nationwide.

As the leading Irish grocery retailer, supporting over 2,200 local Irish suppliers, SuperValu is committed to supporting the Irish agri-food industry and investing in the local economy, and these new SuperValu stores are no different. The new Athlone and Newbridge stores are supporting emerging Irish food producers through the Food Academy range, which showcases start-up food companies and helps give small producers a big chance.

Commenting on the announcement, Martin Kelleher, Managing Director of SuperValu, said: “At SuperValu we are committed to building vibrant communities and through supplier partnerships and local employment, we look forward to continuing to contribute to the Athlone economy. Today’s store opening demonstrates the strength of SuperValu’s independent community retail model, with this Athlone store owned and operated by local businesswoman Mary Croughan. This is a very exciting development and following significant investment, customers of the new store will be able to enjoy the great value, quality and choice which is synonymous with SuperValu”.

Mary Croughan of SuperValu Athlone said, “We are very proud to be generating employment and helping to boost the local economy of Athlone with the creation of 55 jobs for Athlone. We are delighted to be able to offer the local community of Athlone a quality shopping experience with an extensive range at the best possible value, while at the same time creating local jobs. As an independent local retailer I am proud that I have the opportunity to invest locally by employing people from the Athlone area and sourcing from local suppliers, all of which will add to the overall shopping experience for our customers”.

75% of everything on SuperValu’s shelves is sourced or produced in Ireland. SuperValu continues to source locally wherever possible and purchases almost €2 billion worth of goods from Irish suppliers which help to sustain 30,000 jobs in the Irish economy.

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Around the world in 8,000 walks

How far would you go in a good cause? How about 40,075km? That, in case you were wondering, is the distance you would cover if you walked right round the world.

But relax! You don’t have to run, walk or even crawl that sort of distance – even though that’s the basic idea behind Centra’s Walk the World initiative launched recently by TV presenter and fitness enthusiast Kathryn Thomas.

However, if we get quite a lot of people to walk, say, 5km each, we can together, make up the equivalent of a real walk right round the world. How many people? About 8,000. And we would like you to be one of them. Or more accurately, Centra would like you to be one of them when, on Saturday 17th October, over 200 Centra stores host the Walk the World walk in their local community.

Centra – and we – would also like you to raise money while doing it. So do please get together with people from your community and sign up at your local Centra (or online). Kathryn Thomas, who is, of course, taking part on that day may even join you on your walk!

The cause – the Irish Cancer Society’s Action Breast Cancer programme – is undoubtedly a good one. But there’s much more to this initiative than raising money on one day. There’s also the fact that walking is good for you, which underlines the importance of a healthy lifestyle too. And that leads on to a bigger message about health awareness in general.

Breast cancer is now the most common cancer in women in Ireland so not just money but spreading the word is important. By walking a mere 5km, you – and your community – will be making a big statement that people will notice and think about. Just like Centra’s Bag for Life launch (which we’ve also blogged about), what matters is not just money but people getting the idea and doing something – either to raise funds or to look after their own health. So make sure your fellow countrymen and women get the message. And if you need a way of underlining that message, buying and showing off any of the pink products on sale at Centra during Breast Cancer Awareness Month (especially a pink reflective vest for walking in) should also help!

As should this collective effort by people in towns, villages and cities across Ireland. And it’s much more social – and a lot less painful – than walking 40,075km on your own…

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Food Academy producer Wildberry Bakery Scoops ‘Small Producer of the Year’ accolade at Irish Quality Food Awards

WildBerry Bakery among Food Academy companies to showcase produce at SuperValu stand at the National Ploughing Championships

Cork-based Food Academy producer WildBerry Bakery has scooped the prestigious ‘Small Producer of the Year’ title for its Orange & Almond Cake at this year’s Irish Quality Food Awards. Based in Balineen, Co. Cork, the award-winning bakery produces a range of handmade baked goods, including the ever-popular Orange & Almond Cake.

WildBerry Bakery will be among a range of Food Academy startup food companies showcasing their produce at the SuperValu stand at the National Ploughing Championships this week. Through the Food Academy programme, SuperValu brings community based food start-ups to market and 200 small food producers will secure retail listings worth €15 million with SuperValu in 2015.

The SuperValu stand is now a well-established go-to gourmet food destination, celebrating quality, Irish produce and the very best of local Irish food producers. The Food Academy showcase at Ploughing will offer visitors an opportunity to see the value that Food Academy has made to farm families and local businesses across the country, while also demonstrating a selection of their innovative products. Visitors to the SuperValu stand will be encouraged to create their own Good Food Karma moments as they enjoy a range of delicious locally-sourced wholesome food.

Commenting on the award, Martin Kelleher, Managing Director SuperValu said, “We are delighted to see one of our Food Academy food producers recognised with the coveted award of Small Producer of the Year and we congratulate WildBerry Bakery on their title. There are some really inspiring success stories coming out of Food Academy and we look forward to celebrating this at our Ploughing showcase.”

“Food Academy is all about helping small artisan food producers get their products to market and grow sustainably, just as WildBerry are doing. Through the programme, a food startup can begin its relationship with a local SuperValu store, with the potential to grow their business across our entire store network. This is good news for producers and good news for SuperValu customers – as you will often find products in our stores which aren’t available elsewhere.”

Susan Robbins Fehily of WildBerry Bakery said, “It is so encouraging to be called out as the ‘Small Producer of the Year’ at a national competition. Working with local SuperValu retailers through the Food Academy, has given us a route to market which otherwise would not have been open and provided us with the skills required to expand the business sustainably.”

SuperValu serves over 2.6 million customers every week and now has 222 stores nationwide. 75% of everything on SuperValu’s shelves is sourced or produced in Ireland. SuperValu continues to source locally wherever possible and purchases almost €2 billion worth of goods from Irish suppliers which help to sustain 30,000 jobs in the Irish economy.

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70 jobs created as new SuperValu store opens in Newbridge

€2.2 million investment in greenfield 13,000 sq ft site

SuperValu, the leading Irish grocery retailer, announced that 70 new jobs have been created at its new Newbridge store which opened today.

The new 13,000 sq ft store, which represents an investment of €2.2 million, is located on the Athgarvan Road. The store will be owned and operated by local businessman Andrew Cross, who owns three other stores in Kildare – Centra Hazelmere in Naas, Centra Roseberry Hill in Newbridge and Centra Hillside Kilcullen. All three Centra stores currently hold the ‘Excellence Ireland Emerald Award’ for best practice in food retail.  As a result of the Newbridge store opening, Cross now employs 125 people in Kildare.

Commenting at the store opening, Andrew Cross said: “Partnering with SuperValu, I am very proud to be generating employment and helping to boost the local economy with the creation of 70 jobs for the Newbridge locality. Cross’ have been supporting the community of Kildare for the past 24 years, and we are delighted to be further investing in Newbridge with the opening of this brand new 13,000 sq ft store, demonstrating our confidence in the local economy.”

Speaking at the launch, Martin Kelleher, SuperValu Managing Director, said: “As the leading Irish retailer, we are delighted to open our first SuperValu store in Newbridge, enabling the community to experience our unique combination of quality and innovative food, complemented by a tailored local offering. Today’s store opening demonstrates the strength of SuperValu’s independent community retail model, as local businessman Andrew Cross continues to invest in his local community with this new store”

Customers in the new store will enjoy a fresh meat counter with expert butchers to hand, a fish counter, a bakery, a hot food deli, an off-license and the Food Academy range, which showcases emerging food producers and helps give small producers a big chance. The store will also offer an online shopping service, as well as home delivery options.

SuperValu serves over 2.6 million customers every week and now has 222 stores nationwide. 75% of everything on SuperValu’s shelves is sourced or produced in Ireland. SuperValu continues to source locally wherever possible and purchases almost €2 billion worth of goods from Irish suppliers, which helps sustain 30,000 jobs in the Irish economy.

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Dogs, cats, pink ribbons and spreading the word

The bag for life can do a lot for what is, essentially, a large, sturdy item for putting your groceries in. It saves time when you’re shopping. It cuts waste. It even helps the environment. Well now it’s doing even more: it’s helping to save lives.

So what has actually happened? Well, our friends at Centra have brought out a stylish new bag for life – and in true fashionista style it’s a limited edition. But it’s more than just a chance to look good when shopping – you can also feel good about the donation you make to the Irish Cancer Society’s Action Breast Cancer programme whenever you buy one of these bags.

Yes, Breast Cancer Awareness Month is imminent and this year, Centra has got together with stylist and fashion blogger Holly White and designer Justinas Alisauskas to turn the humble shopping bag into a chic little number to highlight this important cause. Our limited edition shopping bag features the Breast Cancer Awareness pink ribbon along with some very witty drawings of Irish cats and dogs. It’s available in September and October while stocks last. And for this unique and very striking shopping accessory Centra is only asking €3 (or more if you’re feeling generous).

On a more serious note, however, it’s about more than just the money. By carrying the daily, weekly or fortnightly shop in one of these special Breast Cancer Awareness bags for life, you will be raising awareness yourself and perhaps even giving people a nudge to do something for the cause – or (equally important) to find out more about looking after themselves.

So do buy a Centra Breast Cancer Awareness bag for life, and do be generous if you can. It’s about more than just pictures of our furry friends. But they are very, very good pictures.

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SuperValu becomes first grocery retailer to offer Irish grown corn on the cobs nationally

SuperValu to sell 50,000 fresh Irish corn on the cobs this Autumn

SuperValu, the leading Irish grocery retailer, has today announced that it expects to sell 50,000 home-grown Irish corn on the cobs this Autumn. Supplied by Cork based producer Rowland Newenham, this is the first time that Irish grown corn on the cobs will be available on a national scale in Ireland, with SuperValu becoming the first retailer in the country to offer this fresh Irish product nationally.

The Irish corn on the cob will be available at SuperValu’s 221 stores nationwide from Thursday 3rd September. Rowland Newenham sowed two crops of four varieties in late April and early May, grown under biodegradable plastic for early planting.

As the number one supporter of the Irish agri-food industry, SuperValu is committed to sourcing from Irish suppliers and has a long-standing relationship with Rowland Newenham. Operating from 140 acres in Carrigaline, Co. Cork and employing ten staff, Rowland Newenham also supplies SuperValu’s fresh Irish brussels sprouts, rhubarb, leeks and fennel.

Commenting on the announcement, Martin Kelleher, Managing Director, SuperValu, said: “At SuperValu we are committed to supporting the Irish agri-food industry through long-term sustainable partnerships, sourcing from over 2,200 Irish suppliers. Our relationship with Rowland Newenham, now in its 37th year, enables us to bring the best of quality Irish produce to SuperValu customers while also helping to support local jobs.

Rowland Newenham added, “Corn on the cob is a seasonal favourite and I am delighted to be growing this crop here in Ireland and supplying it on a national scale for the first time. Our relationship with SuperValu continues to thrive as we share a vision to bring fresh quality Irish produce to consumers and we look forward to continuing this partnership long into the future.

SuperValu serves over 2.6 million customers every week and now has 221 stores nationwide. 75% of everything on SuperValu’s shelves is sourced or produced in Ireland. SuperValu continues to source locally wherever possible and purchases almost €2 billion worth of goods from Irish suppliers which help to sustain 30,000 jobs in the Irish economy.

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