Fivemiletown cheese in artisan showcase at Belfast International Airport
Published: 24 September 2013
Travellers flying from Belfast International Airport are now able to take Fivemiletown Creamery’s award-winning speciality cheeses with them to enjoy later. The cheese is among the first artisan foods to be chosen for a new local food showcase at the airport.
The creamery is one of the first smaller businesses to benefit from a decision to showcase local artisan foods in a shop in Departures, some of which have won UK Great Taste Awards. Other artisan foods now on sale are Glenarm organic smoked salmon from Ewing Seafoods in Belfast and traditional Irish breads from Jeffer’s Home Bakery in Lisburn, County Antrim.
The creamery, one of Northern Ireland’s oldest dairy farmers’ co-operatives, is supplying its full range soft cheeses to The Irish Quarter shop in the Departures Lounge and which now features a chill cabinet for local gourmet foods.
Welcoming the deal with Aelia UK, which operates the shop for Belfast International Airport, Peter Dunlop, Fivemiletown Creamery’s marketing manager, says: “This is important business for us because it gives our products a very significant showcase in one of the busiest locations in Northern Ireland.
“Around five million people pass through the airport every year and thereby provide a tremendous marketing opportunity for us to enable them to example the genuine flavours of Northern Ireland. We are delighted to be working with Aelia UK on this immensely significant opportunity.”
Michele Hunter, Irish Quarter manager, adds: “We’ve been looking at additional products from Northern Ireland companies, especially from artisan businesses, to include as part of a further development of the store. The Great Taste Awards has demonstrated that Northern Ireland has some superb artisan foods.
“While we’ve provided opportunities to a number of processors of ambient goods such as biscuits and chocolate we’ve been keen to explore opportunities with a much wider base of artisan providers included cheese, bakery and seafood.
“Fivemiletown’s excellent cheeses have been featured in the airport’s Business Centre for some time and extending this presence to our retail operation made sound sense. The development required some changes in the shop, the most significant being the introduction of a chill cabinet to enable us to present the cheese and other products in an ideal setting.
“The introduction of the new products is proving to be a very popular initiative particularly with tourists and those visiting family and friends who wish to take a taste of Northern Ireland home with them.
“In addition to Fivemiletown cheese, we’ve introduced other gourmet products such as Ewing Seafood’s organic smoked salmon, and traditional Northern Irish breads from Jeffers Home Bakery in Lisburn.”
Aelia UK introduced The Irish Quarter store as part of the airport’s £10 million expansion programme. The store is an integral part of the Aelia Duty Free area within the Departures zone. It aims to reflect the spirit of Northern Ireland, with its range of Irish fragrances, fashion, food, confectionery and souvenirs.
Fivemiletown Creamery is Northern Ireland’s original speciality cheese business. Established in 1898, the company employs around 50 people in handcrafting a range of cheese, most of which are now sold outside Northern Ireland.