Spar signs £3.5m deal with six local produce suppliers
Suppliers including beef firm Dunbia, Richhill firm Rockvale Poultry and pork processor Fred C Robinson are among six companies supplying to Spar owner Henderson Wholesale for the first time, the company has said.
Henderson said the new deals with Northern Ireland food firms were worth a combined £3.5m.
New products from the suppliers have been launched in 400 Spar and Eurospar stores around Northern Ireland.
Every product in the range has a stamp which lets the shopper know exactly where their product was sourced or produced.
The goods are all badged under the new label 'enjoy local'.
In total, the new range means that fresh products from 22 Northern Ireland suppliers are now being stocked in Spar and Eurospar.
Paddy Doody, sales and marketing director at Henderson Wholesale, said: "Henderson Wholesale has invested a significant amount to date in the launch of the new own brand enjoy local range, and in 2015 we will invest £3.7m in the implementation of our marketing strategy.
"This underlines everything we are about - a local business working with local suppliers to provide for our local stores and shoppers.
"Consumers will see a real change in our own brand products and we're delighted to work with some of Northern Ireland's finest local farmers and producers during this exciting time."
Clandeboye Estate Yogurt, made in Bangor, Co Down, and Genesis Bakery, based in Magherafelt, Co Londonderry, are supplying Henderson Wholesale for the first time, along with Co Tyrone beef giant Dunbia, Rockvale Poultry in Richhill, Co Armagh and pork processor Fred C Robinson in Ballyclare, Co Antrim.
Neal Kelly, fresh foods director at Henderson Wholesale, added: "Extensive research showed that more than anything, our shoppers appreciate value, range and provenance when it comes to fresh foods, so we're delighted to launch the enjoy local range to meet their demands.
"Adding to our repertoire of suppliers pushes our local message further so we can confidently say that over 75% of our total range of fresh products are produced and sourced locally."
Henderson Group is run by brothers Martin and Geoffrey Agnew. It owns the Spar, Eurospar, Vivo, Vivoxtra and Vivo Essentials franchises in Northern Ireland.
Number of NI suppliers whose products are stocked in Spar stores