Co Fermanagh egg producer hatches deal with Asda
A Co Fermanagh free range egg producer has cracked its first major supermarket deal - with Asda in Northern Ireland.
The new contract is a big break for the husband and wife team behind Cavanagh Free Range Eggs.
The company already supplies chefs at Belfast's Merchant Hotel and the Slieve Russell Hotel in Co Cavan.
And, in a novel way of meeting demand, they also stock a vending machine in Co Cavan with their eggs.
Now, eggs from the farm of Eileen and John Hall - who employ seven people in in Newtownbutler - will be sold in Asda's 16 Northern Ireland stores.
The couple initially ran a beef and sheep farm until the 2001 foot and mouth crisis encouraged them to diversify into egg production.
Mrs Hall described the new contract as a "significant step forward" for the team.
"Over the last four years we've focused our efforts on building the brand and developing our product range to ensure we're ideally positioned to supply major supermarkets," she said.
"We know that contented hens produce the best quality, tasty eggs, and we're delighted that Asda has also recognised this.
"We believe the move will also be appreciated by their Northern Ireland customers."
Brian Conway from Asda in Northern Ireland said: "This is yet another example of our commitment to NI Year of Food and it also shows how initiatives such as our Supplier Development Academy are delivering positive business results for local producers."
The contract was announced at the recent Balmoral Show following an initial approach from the Halls to Asda at last year's show.
Cavanagh also took part in a 'Meet the Buyer' event held in Asda's Enniskillen store last year.