Fane Valley boss wins award for contribution to agrifood
The head of one of Northern Ireland's top agri-food firms has been given an award for his contribution to the industry.
Fane Valley chief executive Trevor Lockhart received the accolade at the Northern Ireland Food and Drink Awards held in Belfast's Crowne Plaza Hotel.
Held by the Northern Ireland Food and Drink Association (NIFDA) and supported by Ulster Bank, the awards are a measure of commercial success for food and drink manufacturers and processors.
NIFDA said that this year's awards, taking place against the backdrop of Brexit, reflected the resilience of the food industry.
The night brought joint winners in one category. Linden Foods - owned by Fane Valley - joined Finnebrogue Artisan to share the Ulster Bank best new product in a large company category.
Linden Foods won for its lamb loin with honey-roasted parsnips while Finnebrogue was praised for its Naked unsmoked back bacon.
Mash Direct picked up an award for its beer-battered onion rings while Cloughbane Farm Foods won the small company category with its lentil and vegetable casserole.
Michael Bell, executive director of NIFDA, said: "When it comes to innovation, quality and commercial success, Northern Ireland's food and drink industry is truly world-leading.
"This is the 15th time NIFDA has held these awards, and in the history of the event we have never held it during such tumultuous times. However, this event is proof, if it were needed, of how resilient our industry is."