Fifteen Irish SMEs participating in an EU export development programme are expected to share a €3.7m retail sales boost in the French market.
The Access 6 programme’s French cluster aims to boost Irish food and drink exports to the French retail grocery and foodservice market.
Access 6 programme director, John Whelan, said: “Exports are key to the growth of Irish companies and vital to the success of the Irish economy. The Access 6 programme is dedicated to providing SMEs in the food and drink industry with expertise to help them access and trade in profitable new markets.
“These 15 SME producers are expected to achieve the targeted incremental sales of €250,000 each. A total of €3.7m added sales for the 15 companies is a small slice of the €312bn French market, but to each of these companies it will make a significant difference to their total company performance over the next two years, and guide them along the path to sustainable sales in the French market over the years to come.”
The Irish ambassador to France, Rory Montgomery, hosted a reception in Paris to promote the initiative.
Mr Montgomery said: “France is home to 66m people, and one of the largest foodservice markets in Europe and has a retail grocery market worth in the region of €225bn.
“I believe that Irish food and drink companies are continuing to enjoy a very positive image within France and wish these companies luck as they explore new trade relationships here.”
Irish participants in Access 6 include Starcrest Seafood, Swift Fine Foods, Terra Drinks, Big Pot Company, Brunch Box, Good 4 U, and Dessert Depot.
Funded by the EU, the initiative is delivered by the Irish Exporters’ Association, Northern Ireland Food and& Drink and Scotland Food and& Drink.
In all, 90 SMEs across the three border regions will receive training and mentorship to trade in markets including the UK, France, Germany, Scandinavia, North America, and Benelux.
Irish-based Bullseye Marketing has been enlisted as mentor to the participating companies.
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