Sunday, 9 October 2011

Our New Producer Profile

Don't forget to check out the latest addition to our website We now have a producer profile spot, which I’m sure will generate interest not just with visitors to the site, but with members also. For anyone who would like to contribute, please send your profile to me at The objective of the profile is to let people know we are a diverse group with varied talents, from different walks of life, sharing a belief in localised self help and a desire to enrich our communities socially and economically.

Your profile should be 250-300 words, about
(a) who you are and perhaps your family
(b) a little background on how you started producing for Country Markets
(c) if your skill was developed on the family farm/business or you had specific training
(d) any awards/prizes you have won
(e) some photographs of yourself, your produce, your awards.

Each of us contributes to the great diversity in our markets, and our stories are of interest to others. After all people want to know about people. Who knows your story might inspire someone to make something more of their skill, or even become a member!

Saturday, 8 October 2011

New Market Opens

Our most recent market opened in Upper Glanmire on Friday last 30/09/2011 and they had a great first day. I wish them every success as they start out.

Ballynacargy Country Market

Ballynacargy Country Market will feature on Waterways (RTE1, Sunday evenings) Dick Warner’s series about his journey along the restored Royal Canal aboard a 19th- century barge, last used on the route in 1923. Ballynacargy in Co Westmeath is near the canal . The first of six episodes was shown last Sunday evening 02/10/2011 at 8.30pm so keep an eye out for Ballinacargy Country Markets.

Beltra Country Market

Beltra Country Market is featured in the November issue of Easy Food magazine. This is Ireland’s number one food magazine, and statistics show the readers are people we would like to know, those with young families. The article is about 250-300 words, has some nice photos and is well worth studying to see how to get that all important information included, without it sounding like a sales pitch!

Limerick Regional Food Event 03/10/2011

On 03/10/2011 two of our members attended a regional food event in Thomond Park, Limerick. The event which was free, was a joint agency initiative led by Bord Bia and Atlantic Way. Failte Ireland, LEADER groups, County Enterprise boards and Teagasc were also involved.

The objective was to stimulate awareness and generate demand for local food. Food producers from Clare, Galway and Limerick showcased their produce to local retailers and foodservice buyers in what is known as a B2B, or business to business venture.

Minister Simon Coveney addressed the audience and made reference to Country Markets. I had asked him at a previous event to mention us when he spoke of the agri food and artisan sector and the contribution we are making.

Even though we did not take part in the display it proved a very rewarding experience. Josephine from Portumna market and Betty from Nenagh market spent the evening networking. They spoke with representatives of Bord Bia, Teagasc and Failte Ireland, it was also interesting that the producers present knew about us.

They also spoke with Simon Coveney and had a photograph taken. This is a good way to put a face on the organisation, get out there and be visible to the agencies and various bodies.

Thank you Josephine and Betty.

Sunday, 2 October 2011

Suggested Reading

 In June Annette O Leary of Achill Country Market published a booklet on edible seaweeds. ‘Achill’s Hidden Garden,- Edible Seaweeds’ is an introduction to the seashore, including identification, harvesting and storing of sea vegetables.

Annette lives in the house where she was born and reared in Pollagh, Keel on Achill Island. Growing up the children of the area used the seashore as their playground, and Annette learned all she knows about seaweeds from her grandparents, parents and aunts.

She harvests enough for her family and Achill Country Market. This was a poor year for harvesting Duileasc, it needs to be picked and dried in one day. Commercial supplies of Duileasc are much saltier as no natural sun in used in the drying process.

The booklet is available through local shops in Achill, (Euro 5) or direct from Annette.
Annette O Leary
Achill Island,
Co Mayo.

Annette recommends Quality Sea Veg in Burtonport for those wishing to buy ready mixed sea spice or sea veg and Dr Prannie Rhattigans recipe book The Irish Seaweed Kitchen.