Artisan food companies and food startups are invited to apply for a LEADER initiative that has already invested €300,000 in six Cork companies so far this year.
Hassetts Bakery, Frank Hederman Smoke House, Leahy’s IceCream & Chocolate Factory, Kinsale Bay Food, Clonakilty Chocolate and Skibbereen Food Company have already received significant support through the programme, which is managed by SECAD and supported by Cork County Council.
Suzanne Kearney, SECAD, said: “This funding offersfood producers a real opportunity to benefit from investment in market development, competitiveness and innovation. We are inviting food companies to get in touch with us so that we can support them in the funding application. While the funding is open until end of 2020, we are advising food producers to contact us as soon as possible to avail of this excellent opportunity.”
Food startups can apply for funding up to €200,000, while the minimum is €5,000. This year's recipients were given grants for production equipment, branding and marketing resulting in potential job creation of up to 26 new roles.
The LEADER Food funding is ideally suited to food producers with distinctive local foodstuffs, marketing and processing for strategically identified sectors including honey and apple processors, and collaborative proposals, with a focus on production quality and market issues.
Improved marketing, product quality and business skills through training are also supported through the programme. Cllr. Christopher O’Sullivan, Mayor of Cork County, said this funding is an example of the County Council’s continuing dedication to both our local economy and communities.