A new strategy for Cork’s artisan food sector was created by SECAD (South and East Cork Area Development).

As well as providing employment supports to individuals and groups, SECAD provides supports such as mentoring, training courses, small grants and networking to people setting up their own business. 

SECAD’s new Artisan Food Enterprise and Innovation Strategy 2015-2020 aims to support the artisan food sector and develop the industry in rural Cork. 

There are over 100 active food processors in South and East Cork, ranging from startups to micro enterprises and established SMEs.

“Overall the food sector is going through a period of growth, national targets are being achieved in terms of exports,” says Ryan Howard, CEO of SECAD. “However, to maintain this we need to invest in the next generation of artisan food success stories. This will require investment in startup artisan food enterprises and more investment in established enterprises [so] they can scale up to the next level.”

SECAD serves a population of over 148,000 people in the Cork region, including towns such as Cobh, Midleton, Youghal, Carrigaline, Ballincollig, and expanding villages such as Glanmire, Carrigtwohill, and Crosshaven.

Pictured are Casey O’Conaill (O’Conaill’s Chocolate); Sandra Burns, Joe’s Farm Crisps; Jane Murphy (Ardsallagh Goats Cheese); Ryan Howard (SECAD) and Seamus Cunningham, Midleton Chamber & Midleton Food Festival – all of which have been supported by SECAD.

Thinking of setting up a food business? Start planning. Download a free business plan template. 

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