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Northern Ireland food firms urged to co-operate on exports

By Margaret Canning

Published 15/05/2015

Enterprise Minister Jonathan Bell (second right) addressed the Ulster Bank lunch in the Balmoral Show’s main marquee. He met Jim Dobson, chief executive of Dunbia (right), along with Ellvena Graham and Richard Donnan from Ulster Bank
Enterprise Minister Jonathan Bell (second right) addressed the Ulster Bank lunch in the Balmoral Show’s main marquee. He met Jim Dobson, chief executive of Dunbia (right), along with Ellvena Graham and Richard Donnan from Ulster Bank

Food producers in Northern Ireland should work with their counterparts in the Republic to make the most of global markets, the head of a major beef processor has said.

Jim Dobson, the chief executive of Dunbia Group in Dungannon, addressed the Ulster Bank Lunch at the Balmoral Show, where he said members of the food industry in Northern Ireland should be collaborating more.

New Enterprise Minister Jonathan Bell and Ulster Bank head of Northern Ireland, Ellvena Graham, also addressed the lunch.

Mr Dobson also said co-operation with the Republic and pooling of resources could help the food industry on both sides of the border to exploit global markets like the US and the Middle East.

Mr Dobson, whose business has annual turnover of £800m and pre-tax profits of £4.6m, said: "Members of the local food supply chain rely on each other to stay in business, and as we face similar challenges, it makes sense for us to work together to solve them. Our competition is not with each other, but with other countries who are trying to be ahead of the game in a fast-moving market."

Belfast Telegraph

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