O’HARAS of Foxford received not one but two prestigious awards at the Blas na hÉireann national finals in Dingle.
The Mayo bakery took Silver in the Christmas Cakes/Christmas Baked Goods and also the Chocolate Cake categories.
Founded in 1951, the company is still owned and run by the O’Hara family, who pride themselves on the motto ‘Care in the Making, Care in the Baking’.
The company, which employs a staff of over 160, is the holder of several national hygiene and quality awards and a previous overall winner of the National Hygiene and Food Safety Award at the prestigious EIQA (Excellence Ireland Quality Association) Quality and Excellence Awards.
O’Haras operate an established network that extends nationally and internationally to ensure distribution to the retail, wholesale and catering sectors. Producing over 140 bread and cake products, the bread distribution is done at a regional level while the cake distribution network ensures that O’Hara’s cake products are available nationally.
Now in their 11th year, Blas na hÉireann, the Irish Food Awards, is the biggest competition for quality Irish produce on the island of Ireland. Over 2,500 products were entered into the 2018 competition to win Gold, Silver and Bronze Awards in over 100 food and drink categories as well as key awards such as supreme champion and best artisan producer.
The Blas awards are the biggest blind tasting of produce in the country, and the criteria on which the product is judged as well as the judging system itself is recognised as an international industry standard.
Research has shown that the Blas accreditation has the highest recognition amongst Irish consumers and using the award logo on packs encourages shoppers to buy these products. It is their guarantee of a top quality Irish product.
Speaking on receiving the award, O’Hara’s new product development director, Julie O’Hara, said: “It is such an honour to receive this award. A huge achievement for all the O’Hara team.”