Kinsale Gourmet has won the most-coveted prize for Innovation at this year’s Blas na hÉireann, the Irish Food Awards which was announced on Friday, October 2nd.
The Cork company’s recently launched Meals Made Easy was chosen as the overall winner from 90 products that were carefully scrutinised and judged for innovation as part of the award sponsored by Bord Iascaigh Mhara’s Seafood Development Centre, the country’s only purpose built centre for seafood excellence and innovation.
In its 8th year, Blas na hÉireann, the Irish Food Awards is the biggest competition for quality Irish produce on the island of Ireland.
Kinsale Gourmet launched its Meals Made Easy range in June and has since secured a sizeable contract with SuperValu. The products are similar to scratch kits which are popular in the UK and consist of 4 pots of par-cooked ingredients such as prawn, hake, salmon, vegetables, rice etc. and mouth-watering sauces, all of which are 100% free of preservatives, additives, artificial colours and flavours. All the ingredients are gluten free and cooked in one pan to create a nutritious and flavour-full meal in just 6 minutes.
Celebrating his win, Mark Muldoon of Kinsale Gourmet said: “We are absolutely thrilled to win Blas na hÉireann’s Innovation award which recognises and validates our dedication to developing a truly innovative product that caters for those who want convenience without having to sacrifice nutrition and flavour. We’re also delighted and excited to win the bursary of €4,000 for the expert services and supports in BIM’s Seafood Development Centre which will help us to further develop and innovate new products which we hope will now be even more possible with this national award that will no doubt open new doors for us.”
Professor Joseph Kerry of UCC’s School of Food and Nutritional Sciences who was among the judges for the Blas na hÉireann praised Kinsale Gourmet for their award-winning product:
“The winner of the Blas na hÉireann’s award for Innovation sponsored by BIM’s Seafood Development Centre meets a resurgence of people cooking meals at home, and the need for convenience means the scratch cooking model allows for effective time management. Meals Made Easy offer an innovative bespoke meal solution that are balanced with protein and carbohydrates and are nutritious as well as rich in flavour. They are convenient, require minimal preparation and also encourage consumers to eat more fresh and seafood-based products.”
BIM’s Seafood Development Centre (SDC) has sponsored Blas na hÉireann’s Innovation award for the last four years. Paul Ward, Manager of the SDC said: “We are delighted to sponsor this award which recognises and celebrates companies who are bringing truly innovative products to the market. Adding value and adapting products to meet the needs of modern day consumers and markets is imperative to business success and growth. We look forward to working with Kinsale Gourmet through their bursary.”