Linden Foods named Food Manufacturer of the Year 2023 at an industry event in Britain
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Dungannon-based Linden Foods, one of the UK and Ireland’s leading meat suppliers to top retailers and caterers and part of ABP international food group, gained the prestigious award at last week’s Food Industry Awards in London, a high-level event organised by influential UK trade magazine, Food Management Today.
The award, another substantial marketing boost for the Northern Ireland meat processor in the key British market, recognises excellence in product development, innovation, product range and quality. In addition to substantial sales in Britain, ABP Linden also has customers in Europe and further afield ABP Linden is already holder of last year’s World Steak Challenge for a succulent grass-fed ribeye steak from an animal reared on a local farm.
Diane Christie, ABP Linden Foods’ head of innovation and new product development, commenting on the latest award for the company, says: “This is a fantastic endorsement of the quality of our Northern Irish beef and the great team effort involved in the success of our products.
“We are delighted to have the hard work of all our colleagues, and our supply chain partners, especially local farms, recognised at this important international event. This award also recognises the great customers we supply, which encourage us to continuously improve our products and services.”
ABP Linden was chosen as this year’s champion by a panel of expert judges in the influential awards which covered different sectors of food production, manufacturing and retailing across 16 different categories.
The Dungannon business submitted products in several categories and was subsequently awarded the coveted overall Manufacturer of the Year plaudit.
The awards were unveiled at a gala dinner for food industry leaders held in one of Europe’s leading venues, the Royal Lancaster Hotel in London.
The prestigious award of Food Industry Champion of the Year at the ceremony went to Minette Batters, president of the National Farmers’ Union (NFU). Batters was recognised for her unfaltering leadership and dedication to the British food and farming sectors, particularly amid some of the most challenging circumstances for
the industries in recent times.
Batters most recent successes includes the formulation of Downing Street’s Food Summit, which was held in May. The NFU says that the event was a culmination of over a year’s worth of work and campaigning by the trade body, which asked the
Prime Minister to convene the whole supply chain together to discuss the vital measures needed to build resilience and transparency from farm to fork and also to strengthen productivity.
ABP Linden has won a string of industry awards including the World Steak Challenge in Dublin last year for a 30-day matured ribeye from a full bred Dexter animal produced for M&S, part of a longstanding business relationship between the meat processor and the top retailer that stretches over 20 years. The winning meat again came from a Northern Ireland farm.
Furthermore, a succulent and original beef joint from ABP Linden, also for M&S, was named Britain’s ‘Best Meat Product in July 2021 in the Food Management Awards.
The winning product, ‘Mayfair of Beef’, was described as “a luxury and stunningly delicious Aberdeen Angus 30-day matured ribeye of beef tumbled in a bone marrow stock, then wrapped around tender beef fillet for flavour and tenderness and smothered with beef bone-marrow butter”.
Linden Foods is now a UK market leader in fresh meat processing, sourcing and preparation of top quality beef and lamb from its own long-established supply chain of skilled local farmers operating to the highest standards of hygiene, animal welfare
The company sources and processes top quality beef, pork, lamb and poultry from local farms, benefiting farming families and rural communities here. ABP Linden also includes Kettyle Irish Foods in Lisnaskea, Co Fermanagh, now a leading exporter of premium meat products. ABP Linden was previously part of the Fane Valley, one of Ireland’s biggest farmers’ co-operatives, before acquisition by ABP.
Headquartered at Ardee in Co Louth, ABP Group is a hugely successful producer of meats for European, Middle East and Asian retail and catering markets. The Irish group was formed in 1954 and also has extensive meat processing operations at
Lurgan and Newry.