SuperValu, Centra and Mace in Northern Ireland Join Forces with DELI LITES for New Food-to-Go Range

County Down based supplier working with leading NI convenience retailers

SuperValu, Centra and Mace have joined forces with Warrenpoint based Food-to-Go supplier, DELI LITES to launch an exciting new Fresh for You range for stores across Northern Ireland.

The brand-new range, with over 30 product lines including sandwiches, wraps and salads, is now available in 20 stores across the province with further rollouts taking place in the coming weeks.

Commenting on the partnership, Ed Bates, Food-to-Go Category Manager with SuperValu, Centra and Mace said: “Providing fresh food-to-go options for our customers across our network of SuperValu, Centra and Mace stores is at the heart of what we do. We are continually looking for opportunities to work alongside local suppliers and are delighted to partner with DELI LITES for our new Fresh for You range which has been carefully selected to suit a wide variety of tastes. From slim jims and deep fill sandwiches, to gourmet salads and flatbreads – there really is something for everyone.”

DELI LITES is a market leading and award-winning County Down based supplier, making and supplying salads and sandwiches for over 20 years.

Speaking about the new range, Barbara Hawkins, Key Account Manager with DELI LITES said: “We are delighted to collaborate with Musgrave NI to bring this new product range to the market. Our passion for food, innovation and the quality of our products are what drives us as a business and it has been extremely rewarding to work with Musgrave NI who pride themselves in Food Leadership as one of the key pillars of their business. This range will deliver consistently on flavour and quality across the store estate, whilst also injecting innovation and seasonality throughout the year.”

DELI LITES was founded by Brian and Jackie Reid in 1998 and employs 300 people at their production and Food Innovation Hub in Warrenpoint. The business produces over 20 million hand-made sandwiches, wraps and salads annually and distributes across Ireland, UK and Europe.

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Musgrave ‘Tri’ and Succeed in Raising Much Needed Funds for Irish Charities

Over €200k Raised For Three Charities at Musgrave 2019 Triathlon

The annual Musgrave Triathlon took place on Saturday, 31st August at Farran Woods, Co. Cork with more than 130 teams lacing up their runners, donning their goggles and jumping on their bikes on behalf of the 2019 chosen charities; Breakthrough Cancer Research, AsIAm and Focus Ireland.

Since its inception 18 years ago the Musgrave Triathlon has raised an outstanding €4.6 million to support Irish charities make a difference in our communities. This year alone an astonishing €200k was generated for three extremely worthy causes. In the summer months leading up this charity sporting challenge, there were also many Musgrave departmental fundraising events to further increase the sum of money raised. The Musgrave Supply Chain team raised €1,890 through their ‘The Grazing Table’ breakfast pop-up and concert ticket raffle, while the staff in the Cork Warehouse were not afraid of getting their hands wet and raised €1,670 with a dunk tank & raffle. Other staff fundraising activities included a Treadmill Challenge covering 81km, Long Puck, Pre-loved Dress Sale, Long Table Lunch and many more.

This years’ charities, Breakthrough Cancer Research, AsIAm and Focus Ireland, are a constant pillar of support for so many communities throughout Ireland, and this fundraising drive allows them to provide even better services throughout the country. Since the first Musgrave Triathlon in 2002, the sheer generosity of the Irish public is evident through the strong participation and commitment of their retailers, suppliers, staff, participants and volunteers. Individuals such as these continue to exceed expectations by supporting this annual event and increasing the funds raised year on year.

Either as part of a team or as an individual, participants in this years’ Triathlon undertook an 800m swim, 20km cycle and 5km run in the picturesque setting of Farran Woods and the National Rowing Centre. There was also a large number of volunteers on hand helping out during the day; at registration, providing supervision on course, manning water stations and most importantly showing support to athletes.

Not only is this Triathlon an amazing fundraiser but it has been a very popular family fun day. This year’s fun day included a number of activities to keep the kids entertained, including a very popular merry-go-round. Autism charity, AsIAm also erected an Autism Friendly Tent at the Triathlon for people to come and take time out and enjoy some calm during the hustle and bustle of the day. Musgrave partners including Mr Tayto, Naked Juices, Clonakilty Food and Glenilen and brands  like Frank & Honest Coffee, Mood Ice Cream, to name just a few, were on hand to feed the participants and their families, while Munster Triathlon Ambassador, Rob Heffernan was in situ cheering on and motivating participants throughout the course of the day.

Managing Director of SuperValu & Centra, Martin Kelleher commented in relation to this event saying, “It is with great pride that I can yet again say the Musgrave Triathlon has successfully raised another substantial amount of money this year, for charities that do such amazing work in our communities. These worthy charities provide constant help and support to those in need, and it is wonderful to see participants from communities all across Ireland once again lace up their runners and don their goggles to take part in such a fantastic event. We have once again welcomed an increased number of participants this year, and all involved are very proud of the support that in turn is provided to the chosen beneficiaries. Working with our SuperValu and Centra retail partners, we are honoured to support Irish charities to raise much-needed funds that will help communities all across the country.”

Funds raised for this year’s chosen charities will be used for;

  • A three-year PHD scholarship programme with Breakthrough Cancer Research, to help them find new treatments for cancer and hopefully save lives.
  • AsIAm to put in place a full-time community support officer. This individual will be available full time for autistic adults and family members to get in touch with and seek guidance and advice from on a whole range of topics such as accessing diagnosis and services, to dealing with challenges around employment, making friends, or living independently.
  • Focus Ireland to support all their students who have come through their service and help them back into third level education, into career path plans, apprenticeships and develop a career for themselves once they have accommodation.

For those who did not take to the starting line on Saturday you still have the opportunity to donate and show your support for these three deserved Irish charities. To donate to these three charities, or for further information on the Musgrave Triathlon visit www.musgrave-triathlon.com

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SuperValu strengthens its commitment to Autism Friendly Communities by announcing 11 more towns on the Journey to becoming Autism-Friendly

71% of the autism community believes awareness and understanding of autism has increased

Thursday, 19th September 2019 – SuperValu has announced an additional 11 towns on the journey to becoming autism-friendly, continuing to advance its national campaign in partnership with AsIAm, Ireland’s national autism charity and advocacy organisation. The towns include Clane, Bray, Greystones, Wicklow Town, New Ross, Skerries, Lucan, Castlebar, Mallow, Listowel and Tralee.

In conjunction with the announcement, a survey conducted by AsIAm showed that presently the autism community does not find society accessible, understanding and inclusive – but that simple steps could be taken to help change this. A total of 240 people were surveyed who either have autism or know someone closely who does. Those surveyed were asked several questions about their perception of how autism is recognized and understood in retail and in the wider community.

  • 97% of respondents believe that the general public do not understand enough about autism.
  • 89% believe it is important that the general public is educated about autism.
  • 90% say that it is important that their community is autism-friendly.

Despite the majority of those surveyed claiming that the public do not understand enough about autism, 71% believe awareness and understanding of autism has increased in Ireland in the last year. On this, AsIAm CEO Adam Harris says that “awareness and understanding of autism needs to shift to acceptance and support”.

Even more striking were the answers offered by those surveyed in relation to their shopping experiences:

  • 82% believe that most businesses or organizations in their community do not provide the necessary tools to help them participate.
  • However, 62% said they had shopped in an autism-friendly store.
  • 79% believe that most businesses or organizations in their community do not provide a supportive sensory environment which meets their needs.
  • 88% say that if a community was officially autism-friendly it would make them more likely to visit there.

Simple measures can be the difference between exclusion and inclusion, and the survey showed it wouldn’t take a lot for people with autism to have their experiences improved. For example, 50% of respondents said that even if staff were understanding of autism it would greatly improve their experience.

SuperValu are pioneering these changes in-store, and they have also been the enabler in trying to make communities autism-friendly in general through their Autism Friendly Towns campaign. In its first year, the campaign has grown significantly in scale. Having begun as one town in Clonakilty, Co Cork it is outstanding to now welcome these additional 11 towns. The aim of this campaign is to communicate the message that communities fully accessible for autistic people are stronger, more sustainable places to live.

Martin Kelleher, SuperValu Managing Director commented, “As a business, we are on a journey to help make our communities more autism-friendly. Today’s announcement of 11 more towns joining our campaign shows that our roadmap for change is working hard and delivering more inclusive communities. But the work doesn’t stop there. Over 100 of our Supervalu stores offer autism-friendly shopping times, with reduced lighting and less noise. In addition, we are hosting community events and awareness campaigns working with AsIAm, to drive the autism awareness message and make sure more and more communities join us in our aim of becoming an autism-friendly nation.”

AsIAM CEO Adam Harris added, “As Ireland’s National Autism Organisation we are proud to have developed a robust but achievable framework for communities to become autism friendly, in partnership with our colleagues in SuperValu. Autistic people live, work and play in every community across the country. Too often a lack of understanding prevents autistic people from fully participating and contributing to the community. Small steps can make a big difference and communities working together to increase understanding and improve accessibility will bring about happier, healthier lives for autistic people. We look forward to supporting these towns as they go on the journey towards our accreditation.” Adam hosts the AsIAm National Conference taking place this weekend in Malahide, Co. Dublin.

SuperValu’s ambition is to build more inclusive communities across Ireland and their work with AsIAm has allowed them to ensure that they use their unique position in the heart of Irish towns to make positive changes across the entire community. The retailer is committed to raising understanding and awareness of autism among its customers and staff. With over 50,000 families in Ireland living with autism, those affected face barriers to inclusion because of the attitudes of people who may not have first-hand experience of autism.

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17 Jobs On Offer At Musgrave As Part Of 2020 Graduate Programme  

Musgrave, Ireland’s leading food retail, wholesale and foodservice company has announced that it is accepting applications for the 2020 intake of its award-winning Graduate Programme. 17 roles will be available to graduates, with an opportunity to build a career with Musgrave in the areas of Trading, Finance, Marketing, Supply Chain, Digital and Operations.

The Musgrave Graduate Programme offers graduates a structured transition programme from college to the workplace. It provides personal and professional development through a bespoke programme run in partnership with the Irish Management Institute (IMI), in addition to ongoing support and coaching from Musgrave’s senior management team.

This development focus complements the Programme’s ambition to grow each graduates’ potential and skills in functional roles, aligned with meeting Musgrave’s Talent requirements.

As part of the Programme, participants are set a strategic business challenge and present their recommendations to the CEO and Executive team at the annual Graduate Summit.  Recommendations from the 2019 Summit, with an emphasis on sustainable growth and aligned with Musgrave’s sustainability strategy ‘Taking Care of our World’, are currently being integrated into the business.

Musgrave’s success in developing early career Talent has been recognised with major industry awards in recent times including “Graduate Employer of the Year <40 intake” and “Best Graduate Training and Development Programme – business/ management programme” at the 2019 gradireland Graduate Recruitment Awards. This recognition builds on earlier successes when Musgrave Graduate, Ross Kerrigan was named the 2018 gradireland Graduate Employee of the Year and the Programme won the Best Talent Development Initiative at the IITD National Training Awards.

Graduates who are successful in their application will work in key functional roles, supporting Musgrave in feeding one in three people across Ireland. Graduates will also manage relationships with local suppliers, and support local entrepreneurial retailers, ultimately contributing to Musgrave’s Growing Good Business strategy.

Commenting on the launch of the 2020 Graduate Programme, Matt O’Callaghan, Chief Human Resources Officer, said: “As Ireland’s largest private-sector employer, we are delighted to provide the opportunity to work at Musgrave through our Graduate Programme, build a range of business skills and gain valuable experience and exposure. We welcome applications from talented people who want to be part of a thriving business with real purpose, delivering high quality, healthy and inspiring food to all.”

The Musgrave Graduate Programme has provided an early career Talent pipeline for over 25 years and is a proven launchpad for successful and rewarding careers with the company. Former graduates currently hold senior leadership roles in the Finance; Innovation and Consumer Insight; Business Services and Trading functions.

Musgrave is also a destination place to work for experienced professionals who are looking for new experiences in a fast-paced and dynamic environment. Recent opportunities have included roles in buying, information security, consumer insights and finance.

Representatives from Musgrave will be on campus to talk to interested applicants at Graduate Fairs in universities across the island of Ireland throughout September and October.

To apply for the 2020 Programme or to discover Musgrave graduates’ stories, visit www.musgravegraduates.com  Professionals looking for new career opportunities outside of the Musgrave Graduate Programme can view current vacancies on www.musgravegroup.com

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Centra NI Honoured Among the Best in UK

Centra Retailers Honoured Among the Best in UK

Leading NI convenience retailer Centra was honoured last night in London at the 2019 Retail Industry Awards, taking home the title of “Convenience Retailer of the Year”. Lilley’s Centra Dublin Road in Enniskillen was also a winner picking up “Food-to-go Retailer of the Year”.

Speaking today Michael McCormack, Managing Director of Centra in Northern Ireland said:

“To be awarded Convenience Retailer of the Year is a great achievement for everyone associated with Centra and is testament to the hard work that has been put in over the years by our teams both at local and national level. As consumer demand for high quality convenience increases, Centra is responding with refreshed, inviting, modern stores that offer the latest in convenience and this award underlines this. 

“I would also like to congratulate Una Lilley and her team at Centra Dublin Road, Enniskillen who competed against some of the best stores in the UK, and brought home the Food-to-go Retailer of the Year award.” 

Bradley’s Centra in Maghera was highly commended in the Digital Engagement category for their digital enhancements both in store and at the fuel pumps while Centra Church Street in Banbridge was highly commended in the Forecourt Retailer of the Year category. SuperValu also received commendations with Kings Road in Belfast highly commended for National Lottery Retailer of the Year and Omagh for Post Office Retailer of the Year.

Widely regarded as ‘The Oscars’ of the grocery sector, the Retail Industry Awards reward excellence and outstanding achievement across a broad range of categories.

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Musgrave unveiled as Sustainable Development Goals Champion

Musgrave, Ireland’s leading food retail, wholesale and foodservice company, has today been named as a Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Champion by Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Richard Bruton TD.

Musgrave was selected to become one of Ireland’s SDG Champions due to its ongoing commitment to operating as a sustainable business, and the notable achievements to date as part of its Taking Care of Our World sustainability strategy.

Musgrave has committed that 100% of its own brand, in-store and fresh produce packaging will be recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025. Important milestones towards this target have been the introduction of compostable produce bags for fruit and vegetable in-store at SuperValu, removing 2.7 million single use plastic bags from its supply chain and introducing compostable coffee cups and lids for Frank and Honest.

Musgrave was one of the first companies globally to integrate the principles of the UN Sustainable Development Goals into its day-to-day business activities as part of its Taking Care of Our World sustainability strategy. The company will raise public awareness of the Goals and illustrate practical ways in which organisations and individuals can contribute to achieving the Goals.

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals are an ambitious set of targets, covering the social, economic and environmental requirements for a sustainable future. They cover policy areas such as poverty eradication, economic development, protection of the environment, access to health and education services, gender equality, peaceful societies and human rights.

In its role as SDG Champion, Musgrave will now champion four specific SDG goals:

  • Good Health and Well-Being
  • Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • Responsible Consumption and Production

Commenting about the announcement, Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Richard Bruton TD said: “We need to take actions in a broad range of policy areas to put us on a more sustainable pathway. The Sustainable Development Goals draw those together in an integrated way. Achieving them will be a challenge. We need everyone to get involved and play their part in whatever way they can. The Champions chosen here today will be beacons of best practice for the coming year. They will lead the way with practical examples for how we can all contribute.”

Chris Martin, CEO, Musgrave, added, “Sustainability is at the heart of Musgrave’s approach to business, so we are honoured that Minister Bruton has named Musgrave as one of Ireland’s Sustainable Development Goal Champions. As SDG Champion, we look forward to making a real difference to the public’s health and well-being by championing sustainable development and building better, sustainable communities across the island of Ireland.”

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Musgrave Unveiled as Sustainable Development Goal Champion by Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Richard Bruton TD

Musgrave, Ireland’s leading food retail, wholesale and foodservice company, has today been named as a Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Champion by Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Richard Bruton TD.

Musgrave was selected to become one of Ireland’s SDG Champions due to its ongoing commitment to operating as a sustainable business, and the notable achievements to date as part of its Taking Care of Our World sustainability strategy.

Musgrave has committed that 100% of its own brand, in-store and fresh produce packaging will be recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025. Important milestones towards this target have been the introduction of compostable produce bags for fruit and vegetable in-store at SuperValu, removing 2.7 million single use plastic bags from its supply chain and introducing compostable coffee cups and lids for Frank and Honest.

Musgrave was one of the first companies globally to integrate the principles of the UN Sustainable Development Goals into its day-to-day business activities as part of its Taking Care of Our World sustainability strategy. The company will raise public awareness of the Goals and illustrate practical ways in which organisations and individuals can contribute to achieving the Goals.

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals are an ambitious set of targets, covering the social, economic and environmental requirements for a sustainable future. They cover policy areas such as poverty eradication, economic development, protection of the environment, access to health and education services, gender equality, peaceful societies and human rights.

In its role as SDG Champion, Musgrave will now champion four specific SDG goals:

  • Good Health and Well-Being
  • Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • Responsible Consumption and Production

Commenting about the announcement, Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Richard Bruton TD said: “We need to take actions in a broad range of policy areas to put us on a more sustainable pathway. The Sustainable Development Goals draw those together in an integrated way. Achieving them will be a challenge. We need everyone to get involved and play their part in whatever way they can. The Champions chosen here today will be beacons of best practice for the coming year. They will lead the way with practical examples for how we can all contribute.”

Chris Martin, CEO, Musgrave, added, “Sustainability is at the heart of Musgrave’s approach to business, so we are honoured that Minister Bruton has named Musgrave as one of Ireland’s Sustainable Development Goal Champions. As SDG Champion, we look forward to making a real difference to the public’s health and well-being by championing sustainable development and building better, sustainable communities across the island of Ireland.”

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Champion Health Promotion in Your Local School & They Could Win £5,000 worth of Sports Equipment from SuperValu and Centra Northern Ireland

  • SuperValu and Centra join forces with Action Cancer to help deliver Health Action Schools Programme and increase awareness of healthy lifestyle choices.
  • Parents can nominate schools taking part in the Health Action Programme to have a chance of winning £5,000 worth of sports equipment.
  • In addition, SuperValu & Centra continue to support Big Bus Services, driving home early cancer detection across the province.

Leading convenience retailers SuperValu and Centra are calling for your help to encourage local schools to avail of Action Cancer’s Health Action Programme. The initiative is all about encouraging young people to make healthier lifestyle choices. In operation since 2003 and having worked with nearly 500,000 pupils so far across Northern Ireland, the programme operates both at primary and secondary level and is delivered by a team of health promotion experts. You can express your interest by visiting www.actioncancer.org, emailing schools@actioncancer.org or call 028 9080 3370.

Furthermore, for the 2019-2020 school year, SuperValu and Centra are offering a prize of £5,000 of sports equipment to one of the schools participating in the Health Action Programme to incentivise registration and participation. To be in with a chance of winning, parents just need to nominate their school through entry forms provided on every Health Action Programme visit.

Speaking today, Michael McCormack Managing Director of SuperValu and Centra NI said:

“Delivering a healthy lifestyle message to today’s younger generation is important and something we at SuperValu and Centra passionately support. Encouraging healthier lifestyles in younger years can reduce the risks of cancer in later life, so our focus is in raising as much money as possible across our store network and head office to enable Action Cancer to continue providing this fantastic service”.

SuperValu & Centra also announced that Action Cancer’s Big Bus Service will now include Centra stores on its route for 2019. In the first half of 2019, the money raised by both retailers has enabled the Big Bus to travel to over 113 locations, provide over 1,200 MOT Health Checks and over 2,400 breast screenings, with an average of 6 women diagnosed with Breast Cancer per 1,000 women screened.

Michael McCormack continued:

“We are delighted to be working with Action Cancer to further extend the reach of the valuable services on offer. The Big Bus is an integral part of the work of Action Cancer delivering many success stories in terms of early detection and prevention. Our SuperValu retailers are a staple fixture on the Big Bus calendar and we are delighted to be extending the reach to our Centra stores too.

Gareth Kirk, CEO of Action Cancer, said:

“The schools Health Action Programme is an excellent initiative, empowering local children to make the right choices when it comes to their health and lifestyles. It is a natural fit that SuperValu stores, like their Centra neighbours, are now involved in endorsing this programme and promoting it within their local areas. 

The Big Bus mobile detection unit brings a life-saving service to our communities. The Big Bus has visited SuperValu stores for many years now and appointments have always been very strong during these visits, bringing early prevention, detection and support services to their customers staff and wider community. We’re delighted to see Centra stores join the visit schedule in 2019/2020”.

SuperValu and Centra have been partnering with Action Cancer since 2001 and are working towards raising one of the largest amounts ever by a company for an individual charity in Northern Ireland. By the end of 2019, the total raised for Action Cancer via the charity partnership will reach an outstanding £3 million.

To find out more about the Health Action Programme read more here. The full list of SuperValu and Centra store visits for the Big Bus can be viewed here. Screenings and health checks for both men and women are available to book online.

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Noel Keeley appointed as new Musgrave CEO

Musgrave Group plc announced today that Noel Keeley, current Managing Director of Musgrave Wholesale Partners, has been appointed as CEO designate of Musgrave and is due to take up this position on 1st January 2020, following a handover period with current CEO Chris Martin. This follows a recruitment process which began with the announcement earlier this year that Chris Martin would retire from the business.

Noel Keeley is currently Managing Director of Musgrave Wholesale Partners, where he is responsible for Musgrave’s wholesale business across the island of Ireland. He has transformed Musgrave MarketPlace, which has become Ireland’s leading wholesale business for retailers, SMEs and a one-stop shop for the hospitality sector. He has also led the growth of SuperValu and Centra in Northern Ireland and he was responsible for the acquisition of fine food specialist La Rousse Foods. Noel Keeley joined Musgrave in 2005 and was Group HR Director before he took up his current role in 2010.

Commenting on the appointment, Musgrave Chairman, Nicky Hartery, said: “We are delighted that Noel has accepted the position as Musgrave CEO. He will bring his vast experience to bear as we build on our Growing Good Business strategy. Under Noel’s leadership our wholesale and food service business has become the market leader across the island of Ireland and he has driven the growth of SuperValu and Centra in Northern Ireland. We would like to thank Chris Martin for his leadership over the past fifteen years, having firmly established Musgrave as Ireland’s leading food retail, wholesale and foodservice company.”

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Awards drive continues for SuperValu and Centra retailers

SuperValu and Centra stores in Northern Ireland have been shortlisted for a total of nine awards in six categories at Ireland’s Forecourt and Convenience Retailer Awards, highlighting once again the excellence on offer across both brands.

Ireland’s Forecourt and Convenience Retailer Awards, taking place on September 18th, are the only specialist awards in Ireland for the convenience and forecourt retailing industry. They act as a benchmark of success in the industry and are hotly contested each year.

The shortlistings are detailed below:

Forecourt Retailer of the Year

  • Lilley’s Centra Drumlyon, Co. Fermanagh
  • Moran’s Centra Coleraine, Co. Derry Londonderry

Newcomer of the Year

  • Centra Carryduff, Co. Down
  • Centra Dublin Road, Co. Fermanagh

Best Customer Service

  • Moran’s Centra Coleraine, Co. Derry Londonderry

Best Food To Go

  • Moran’s Centra Coleraine, Co. Derry Londonderry

Best Forecourt Facilities

  • Moran’s Centra Coleraine, Co. Derry Londonderry
  • Barbican SuperValu Newcastle, Co. Down

Store Manager of the Year

  • Alastair Connor, McCool’s SuperValu Ballymoney, Co. Antrim

In addition, Bell’s SuperValu in Crossgar is shortlisted for Northern Ireland Forecourt Trader of the Year at the 2019 Forecourt Trader Awards. These awards are regarded as the most prestigious event in the UK petrol retailing industry calendar and recognise the best in the business. The ceremony takes place on September 12th.

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