Musgrave Agrees Acquisition of Drinks Inc

Musgrave has announced that it has agreed to acquire the brand and company assets of Drinks Inc. Drinks Inc will continue to trade as a stand-alone business.

Established in 2001 and with annual turnover of £66 million, Belfast based Drinks Inc is one of the largest and fastest growing independent drinks distributors on the island of Ireland. With a portfolio of over 1,000 products covering the spirits, wines, beer and soft drink categories, Drinks Inc is also the exclusive agent for premium brands and wineries including BrewDog, Dingle Distillery and the UK’s number one wine brand Isla Negra.

Kevin O’Leary has been appointed as the new Business Director of Drinks Inc with Paul Camplisson, Owner of Drinks Inc remaining on a consultancy basis and working closely with Kevin to grow the business.

Commenting about the announcement, Chris Martin, Musgrave Chief Executive, said: “As one of the fastest growing drinks companies on the island of Ireland, Drinks Inc is an excellent strategic fit for Musgrave and will strengthen our existing offer to the market. The acquisition forms part of our overarching Growing Good Business strategy to deliver long term sustainable growth and follows a £28 million investment programme to open 20 additional stores and revamp 40 existing stores in Northern Ireland that was announced earlier this year. I look forward to Drinks Inc joining our expanding portfolio of successful brands and to supporting the business to bring it to the next level of growth.”

Paul Camplisson, Owner of Drinks Inc added: “Becoming part of Musgrave is a fantastic opportunity for the Drinks Inc business. In a relatively short period of time, we have firmly established ourselves as one of the largest independent drinks distributors in the market. Musgrave will enable us to provide an enhanced service to our customers and their track record of growing successful customer-focussed businesses makes this the right move for Drinks Inc.

Musgrave re-certified to the Business Working Responsibly Mark for the third time

We were delighted to be re-certified with the Business Working Responsibly Mark this week, the third time Musgrave has received this award. The Mark assesses best-in-class Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and sustainability practices in areas such as employee engagement, innovation, environmental practices, supply chain management and local community engagement. Musgrave CEO Chris Martin, receiving the award in Dublin said: “The achievement of the Mark strengthens our ability to make a real impact and work in partnership with others to inspire a sustainable network of positive change”.

It follows on from Musgrave being named by the Government as a Sustainable Development Goal champion earlier this year. We were one of the first businesses globally to integrate the principles of the UN Sustainable Development Goals into our day-to-day business activities and are committed to raising public awareness of the Goals as an SDG Champion over the coming 12 months.

Charity Partnership is One in 3 Million

SuperValu & Centra reach milestone £3 million fundraising target for Action Cancer

In what is a ground-breaking achievement, SuperValu and Centra retailers have reached a landmark fundraising target of £3 million for Action Cancer – one of the largest amounts ever raised by a company for an individual charity in Northern Ireland.

Thanks to the commitment of SuperValu and Centra retailers in Northern Ireland, Action Cancer is able to provide life-saving services in local communities through the Big Bus as well as the Health Action Programme (HAP).

Michael McCormack, Managing Director of SuperValu and Centra said:

“We are proud to have reached our £3 million fundraising target for Action Cancer. Our retailers and colleagues have worked tirelessly over the years to raise money and this impressive result is testament to their dedication.”

 The Health Action Programme is all about championing health promotion and empowering local children to make the right choices when it comes to their health and lifestyles. The programme has worked with nearly 500,000 pupils across Northern Ireland and Michael McCormack stresses the importance of delivering a healthy lifestyle message to today’s younger generation.

Commenting on the impact of the programme, Mr McCormack said:

“Encouraging healthier lifestyles in younger years can reduce the risks of cancer in later life, so ensuring that this message resonates with our young people is something that SuperValu and Centra passionately support. Our retailers have worked tirelessly to raise over £3million, to enable Action Cancer to continue providing this fantastic service.”   

The Big Bus, which now visits both SuperValu and Centra stores, is a mobile resource centre, providing digital breast screening for women as well as offering M.O.T. health checks for men and women aged 16 and over. In the first half of 2019, the Big Bus has travelled to over 151 locations, providing over 1,963 MOT Health Checks and over 3,624 breast screenings, with an average of six women diagnosed with Breast Cancer per 1,000 women screened.

Gareth Kirk, CEO of Action Cancer stresses the importance of keeping this service on the road:

“The Big Bus touches people’s lives in different ways. For some women, it’s an early breast cancer detection, saving their lives. For others, it’s reassurance that they do not have the disease. Many other men and women gain valuable first-hand insights about their health and how to reduce their risk of cancer. The Big Bus is fuelled by the passion and commitment of our staff, alongside our partners at SuperValu and Centra whose valuable fundraising has made this crucial service possible; together we make a difference to local people every day.”

The longstanding partnership goes back 18 years to 2001 with SuperValu and Centra retailers supporting the vital work of Action Cancer and making a tangible and valuable impact to the people of Northern Ireland.  The SuperValu, Centra and Action Cancer partnership continues to go from strength to strength with plans already in place for a brand-new Big Bus to be unveiled in 2020 and retailers actively looking at new ways to fundraise.

Michael McCormack, Managing Director of SuperValu and Centra, concludes:

“This fundraising milestone is a result of the dedication of our retailers and colleagues – and importantly – the generosity of our customers; we want to say thank you to them for helping us to support the incredible work of Action Cancer.”

Centra expansion continues with £920k investment in 3 new stores

New convenience stores open at Millennium Forum, Bradbury Place and York Road

Centra is bringing enhanced convenience to customers across Northern Ireland with new stores opening at Bradbury Place and York Road in Belfast and the Millennium Forum in Derry~Londonderry. The three stores represent an investment of £920,000 by the leading NI retailer, creating an employment boost of 40 jobs.

Commenting on Centra’s continued expansion, Nigel Maxwell Sales Director Centra Northern Ireland said: “At Centra, our focus is on redefining convenience – providing our shoppers with a healthier offering and innovative ranges, particularly in food-to go and our Frank and Honest coffee brand. Our shoppers expect fresh, nutritious, inspiring and delicious food that is quick, easy and value for money. These stores are the latest examples of Centra providing just that and responding to the changing needs of the busy consumer.”  

Centra Millennium Forum, which opened its doors to the public on 9th October, is located on New Market Street in Derry City and is the first store for retailer Conor Kelly. The store offers customers a new and modern experience including a hot and cold deli, Frank & Honest coffee and a comfortable seating area for customers to come in and relax.

Centra Bradbury Place, located beside Shaftesbury Square, is the fourth store, for retailers Ricky and Vicky Leathem. A prime location in Belfast City centre, the new vibrant and contemporary store opened on 15th October and is certain to be a one-stop-shop for residents and workers in the area, catering for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Perfect for lunch on-the-go, the store features a variety of options to satisfy every craving. For those embracing a healthier lifestyle, Centra Bradbury Place has a range of lighter choices, with fresh salad and sandwich favourites, courtesy of their Green Kitchen hot and cold deli. The couple also own Centra stores on the Lisburn Road in Belfast, and two stores in Lisburn – Ballynahinch Road and Longstone Street.

Centra York Road has been rebranded from a MACE store and is owned by retailers Gareth and Tracey Beacom. The store now boasts a brand new hot and cold deli, Frank and Honest coffee, as well as a much-enhanced range of meal solutions and chilled products ensuring all mealtimes are catered for.

Speaking about the new developments, Nigel Maxwell continued: “We are delighted to see these stores coming on stream and the hard work by our teams coming to fruition. The stores are all trading well, reporting strong sales in their first few weeks and I wish the retailers and their teams every success.”

Clonakilty Celebrates One Year of Being Ireland’s First Autism Friendly Town

In October 2018, Clonakilty, through the partnership with AsIAm and SuperValu alongside local retailers Eugene and Catriona Scally of Scally’s SuperValu, became Ireland’s first ever Autism Friendly Town. Their journey to becoming Autism-Friendly saw businesses, organisations and community groups throughout Clonakilty undergo training and organisational changes to receive accreditation. This initiative and accreditation was a first for anywhere in Ireland and the last year has been an incredible success for the whole Clonakilty community. The aim of this SuperValu and AsIAm initiative is to create a greater awareness, understanding and acceptance of autism so that our communities become more accessible and enjoyable places for autistic people to live in.

Clonakilty’s journey to becoming Autism Friendly began in 2015 when Scally’s SuperValu became the first retailer in Ireland to implement changes in-store ensuring members of the Autism Community could enjoy a better shopping experience. Since then the entire community has got behind the initiative and Eugene Scally of Scally’s SuperValu, Clonakilty said “We are only one year into this initiative and already the awareness of autism in Clonakilty has increased so much and the positive impact on the community is clear. The feedback we have received not just in our store but across all organisations and businesses throughout the community from both locals and visitors has been overwhelmingly positive. The work the committee has done during this journey has created a conversation around autism in the town and made Clonakilty a better place for autistic people and their families to live, work and visit. Not only are locals telling us about how much more inclusive and accessible Clonakilty is but tourists with autism have shared how much they have enjoyed visiting a town that accommodates their needs.”

One of the most popular additions to Clonakilty during this journey has been the sensory garden. Located on the grounds of the West Cork Model Railway the sensory garden was developed to create an environment within the community that would enrich the lives of children and adults living with Autism by providing opportunities to play and explore in a safe and secure space all while enjoying a calming sensory experience. The garden features elements that appeal to all five senses using a range of materials and plants. Exploration in nature improves physical, sensory and emotional health and supports overall well-being and parents have commented that their children have found the garden captivating and engaging, asking to return again and again.

To celebrate the anniversary Alan Gardner star of the Channel 4 programme, The Autistic Gardener visited Clonakilty to see Ireland’s first Autism Friendly town and share how autism has made him one of the world’s leading landscape designers and how autistic people can focus on their strengths to find careers they enjoy. He said “I am delighted to be in Clonakilty to celebrate the first anniversary of the community becoming Autism Friendly. It is clear to see it’s an initiative the whole community had got behind and a great example of how when understanding of autism increases the positive impact it can have for autistic people in all areas of their lives from shopping to employment.”

A key theme of the celebrations this week in Clonakilty is employment and autism. The community are turning their focus on how they can support the autism community find work experience and employment that works to their strengths.

SuperValu Marketing Director, Ray Kelly said, “Supporting Clonakilty on their journey to become Autism Friendly was a proud moment for SuperValu last year. It is our ambition at SuperValu to build more inclusive communities across Ireland and Clonakilty has proved a massive success. The work the Clonakilty community did to receive the accreditation and in the year since is truly impressive and we look forward to continuing our support of Clonakilty and the other 11 towns that have just begun their journey to become accredited Autism Friendly Towns

SuperValu 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.

Big School Cook Off Competition returns for 4th year with SuperValu on board once again

Form 8 pupils Sophia Little and Eva Bagnall, from Aquinas Diocesan Grammar, join Noel McMeel, Executive Head Chef of Lough Erne Resort, Caitriona Lennox, Mount Charles’ Business Development Manager, Brendan Gallen, Head of Marketing at SuperValu and James Street South owner and Head Chef Niall McKenna to help launch this year’s Mount Charles Big School Cook Off Competition, in association with SuperValu.[/caption]

The annual Mount Charles Big School Cook Off Competition, in association with SuperValu, launches with top chefs in NI calling for students interested in cooking, to get involved.

The competition, now in its fourth year, is open to all post primary school pupils across Northern Ireland and Donegal, aged between 11 and 14.

Young people in teams of two are challenged to submit a main course recipe idea that feeds two, focusing on locally sourced ingredients that can be bought on a budget of a tenner, or euro equivalent.

The recipes will be shortlisted on Friday 22nd of November, one per county, and the winning team from each county will progress to cook their recipe for an esteemed panel of judges at the grand finale of the competition next March, in Belfast Met’s Titanic Quarter Campus. County finalists will also be invited to perform a cookery demonstration of their dish, at their local SuperValu store in January, ahead of the final.

Launching this years’ competition, Mount Charles’ Business Development Manager, Caitriona Lennox said:

“This competition is first and foremost an exercise in addressing the serious skills gap in the food service industry in Northern Ireland, by encouraging the next generation of potential young chefs to learn about food provenance and get cooking. We want to support kids with a passion for cooking and give them an insight into the hospitality industry. We’re hoping it will inspire them to consider a career in foodservice and we’ll do what we can to support their future training and skills development.

“Teacher feedback has been amazing, and the competition is growing year on year. Schools are taking part because of the experience it offers the pupils, as well as the great prizes on offer and the kudos of winning the biggest and most prestigious cooking competition in the schools’ calendar,” she said.

Brendan Gallen, Head of Marketing at SuperValu said:

“SuperValu is delighted to be involved once again in this great initiative giving our top young foodies a chance to showcase their talents. Good luck to everyone entering and we look forward to welcoming the regional finalists to their local SuperValu for live demos next year.”

Speaking on behalf of NI chefs championing the competition, Executive Head Chef of Lough Erne Resort, Noel McMeel said:

“We are delighted to lend our support to this initiative, it’s our duty to connect and do more within hospitality and show the next generation of catering professionals how rewarding this industry can be. We’re encouraging pupils aged between 11 and 14 to go to their teachers and tell them you want to be involved. We’ve also shared our best advice in interviews that will run throughout the competition registration period on Belfast Live, to inspire students who want to join our industry. Cooking for the judges in the grand final will also be a wonderful experience and could open the doors to a fantastic future in catering.”

This year teams are asked to submit their recipe ideas by uploading a word document or a video to detailing their recipe choice, locality and seasonality of their ingredients and how they researched and tested their dish.

Full competition terms and conditions can be found at



SuperValu and Centra host scrumdidlyumptious party for action cancer

Leading convenience retailers on final push to reach £3 million fundraising target

Leading retailers SuperValu and Centra will host a special Scrumdidlyumptious party in stores right across Northern Ireland this Saturday, as they edge closer to their £3 million fundraising target for charity partner, Action Cancer. The party will take place in selected stores on Saturday 12th October from 12-3PM, with all funds raised donated to Action Cancer, NI’s leading local cancer charity.

SuperValu and Centra have supported Action Cancer since 2001. Every year, Centra and SuperValu retailers and their customers pull out all the stops to raise much-needed funds for the cancer charity. It is hoped the nationwide fundraiser, which coincides with the 55th anniversary year of the hit Roald Dahl novel, will bring the retailers closer to their milestone £3million target. It is believed this will be amongst the largest amounts ever raised by a company for an individual charity in Northern Ireland.

Funds raised by SuperValu and Centra support a range of projects, including the Big Bus mobile breast screening unit and the Health Action Programme for Children, which encourages children to take steps to prevent cancer in later life.

Brendan Gallen Head of Marketing for SuperValu and Centra said: “The money raised by SuperValu and Centra retailers over the years for Action Cancer has been vital to keeping the Big Bus on the road and delivering much needed MOT health checks and screening services to those who wouldn’t otherwise be screened for breast cancer. The funds raised also support Action Cancer in delivering the Health Action Programme in schools across the province, helping to increase awareness of healthy lifestyle choices among young people.   

“To continue supporting all this great work, we are asking our customers to visit their local SuperValu or Centra store on Saturday 12th October, to enjoy the array of treats that will be on offer and dig deep to support this truly lifesaving cause.”


SuperValu and Centra scooped 139 awards in Blás Na hÉireann

SuperValu won a massive 118 Blás Na hÉireann awards at the annual awards ceremony in Dingle last weekend. SuperValu picked up 42 awards for its’ own brand range of products – winning 21 Gold, 11 Silver and 10 bronze.

SuperValu’s Food Academy producers went home with 76 awards –25 Gold, 27 Silver and 24 Bronze including two Chef’s Larder Awards for Rocker Organic Farm Mixed Salad Leaves & Dunanny Organic Flour. The prestigious awards recognise and celebrate the very best in Irish food and drink and SuperValu’s continued success at the awards, with over 455 accolades in the last four years alone, shows the commitment SuperValu has to the very best quality Irish food.

Centra picked up 21 Awards, an increase of 6 on last year. 13 of these are Inspired by Centra Awards, 6 of which are GOLD (+3 on LY). Centra is delighted that 4 of the Made in Store Salads won awards (1 GOLD for the BBQ Smoked Salmon Quinoa Salad Bowl, 1 Silver for the Torn Ham & Egg Salad Bowl, 2 Bronze for Tom Durkin Spiced Beef & Supergrain Salad Bowl, and Green Grain & Goats Cheese Salad Bowl). Centra now the Best Food to Go Salads in Ireland!!

Musgrave and SuperValu retailer both nominated for energy award

At the same time, Fermoy retailer Riordan’s SuperValu has been shortlisted in the ‘Small and Medium Business – Exemplary energy management’ category at the same awards. Last year, the store became the first SuperValu store in Munster to install solar panels, as part of a €3 million investment by SuperValu to roll out the technology across its store network.

The introduction of solar panels was part of a wider community suitability scheme, run in association with the SEAI, which saw Riordan’s SuperValu and other stores across Ireland investing time and money to build sustainable communities around Ireland.  Following the store’s participation in the SEAI scheme, Riordan’s SuperValu reduced its carbon footprint by over 40%.

The Musgrave Energy Team has worked with 40 of Musgrave’s independent retailers across the country to fit environmentally friendly refrigeration systems, greatly reducing their energy consumption. Looking ahead, Musgrave’s team will continue to work with independently owned and operated retailers to make their stores more energy-efficient, with plans to roll out solar panels to 30 SuperValu stores over the next two years.

Commenting on the SEAI awards nomination, Daniel Murphy, Sustainability Manager, Musgrave, said, “We look at sustainability differently from other businesses; for us, sustainability means living up to the core responsibilities that any good business should; to look after its people and customers, to minimise its impact on the environment. We have set ambitious annual energy and waste reduction targets and put renewable and alternative energy in place to cut our carbon footprint. We’re honoured to be shortlisted for the Energy Awards as our nominations illustrates our achievements to make our business more energy efficient.”

Now in its sixteenth year, the SEAI Energy Awards recognise and reward excellence in all aspects of energy management across seven categories. The winners of the 2019 SEAI Energy Awards are set to be announced at a Gala Awards ceremony on October 16th in the Radisson Golden Lane, Dublin.

SuperValu Lisburn Leading the Way with Flagship Store Opening

Contemporary, new store offers convenient alternative to large supermarket shopping following £850K revamp

SuperValu has unveiled its new flagship store on the Knockmore Road in Lisburn following a £850K refurbishment, creating 12 new jobs. The bright and contemporary store, which continued trading during the works, was officially opened on Saturday 28th September 2019.

The major investment, by leading NI retailer SuperValu, has allowed for new and exciting additions in store, including a new hot and cold deli, alongside an enhanced meat range. The store is also the first in Northern Ireland to offer Moo’d Ice Cream, with a delicious range of flavours and toppings on offer. A rotisserie chicken and deli pizza range ensure all meal times are covered, while Coffee lovers are catered for with an in-store Frank and Honest gourmet coffee dock, featuring 100% compostable coffee cups.

The major new development promises to cater for everyone, from those shopping for weekly essentials through to consumers seeking healthy but convenient lunch and dinner alternatives. The store also boasts an impressive new off-licence along with self-service tills, a seating area and USB charging points.

Commenting on the redevelopment, Store Manager Jamie Graham said: “The team at SuperValu Lisburn are proud to unveil our new-look store. Customer feedback and initial sales over our re-opening weekend show that our new and improved store has been very well received. We look forward to welcoming customers, both new and existing, to see for themselves the fabulous new additions but more importantly the great value and service on offer.”  

Commenting on SuperValu’s continued expansion, Trevor Magill SuperValu Northern Ireland said: “At SuperValu, our focus is on ensuring we meet the needs of consumers who are changing their shopping habits to buying little and often. Reflecting these changes, our store refreshes are providing more inspiration and ideas to shoppers with a focus on quality across fresh produce, meat and a range of in-store food-to-go concepts. Lisburn is a great example of this and I wish Jamie and his team every success.”

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