Teenagers who use seaweed to produce treats were last night named Youth Entrepreneurs of the Year in a competition organised and run by Foróige. The four teenagers from Co Donegal — Mary Kate Carr, Aimee Byrne, Rebecca McShane and Ronan O’Hare were honoured at a Mansion House, Dublin ceremony.
Their business, Milseog na Mara, meaning Desserts of the Sea, uses the seaweed, Carrageen Moss, as the main ingredient for jellies and chocolate mousse. They will now go on to represent Ireland at the European Youth Entrepreneur of the year awards that take place in Budapest in Hungary in November.
Mary Kate said she got the idea for making healthy sweet alternatives when she got sick and her family made her a cold remedy using Carrageen Moss.
“Not only did I get over the cold quickly but I realised this jelly-like substance could be used in alternative ways to make chilled desserts and jellies,” she said.
The group, who used social media to promote their business, met chef Clodagh McKenna, who gave her seal of approval to their products. The girls sell their jellies and mousse at country markets. “Our product has a huge potential for development as it is so versatile,” said Mary Kate.
Their business, established last October, was among 600 that generated a €250,000 turnover in the Foróige Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship. Six finalists who made their pitch for the top prize
The programme runs from September to May every year.
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