The owner of a Cork cafe has opened a new roasting and packing facility thanks to the success of a nationwide deal with German retail giant Aldi.
Rob Horgan, who runs Cafe Velo on George's Quay, gave coffee aficionado and Olympian Gary O'Donovan a tour of the new facility in the ‘Northside for Business’ campus in Ballyvolane on the northside of the city.
The deal has created three full-time jobs and two work placements on Cope Foundation’s 'Ability@Work' project.
Mr Horgan and his team visited a number of green bean merchants before selecting their preferred supplier based on the quality, provenance and traceability of their bean and their passion for great coffee.
It has been served in his cafe for some time.
But the coffee sales business has taken off since Mr Horgan landed the Aldi deal in January.
Under the ‘Grow with Aldi’ promotion, Velo Coffee Roasters was among five Irish producers who were given a one-year full listing on the shelves of 139 Aldi stores.
The new Velo Coffee Roasters facility has been opened as a direct result of the deal and will be used to roast and pack Mr Horgan's ground and whole bean coffee products for supply to the stores.
He said the support and mentoring through the Grow with Aldi programme has benefitted his business immensely.
"We believe we offer something truly unique and are thankful to Aldi for giving us the opportunity to share it," he said.
John Curtin, Aldi's group buying director, said they have invested over €1m in small Irish suppliers under the programme and now have long-term partnerships with over 175 Irish suppliers nationwide.