Karro wins Henderson Wholesale’s Supplier of the Year award at Balmoral S

25 May 2015

Henderson Wholesale, owners of the SPAR and EUROSPAR franchises in Northern Ireland, runs the awards scheme, now in its third year, to mark the excellent produce, practices and ranges of the companies it works with.

As a platinum sponsor of the three day event, the SPAR brand has a key presence at the Balmoral Show, further strengthening its links with the agri-food industry and encouraging its customers to enjoy the best of local produce.

The judging panel of the Local Supplier of the Year awards included Professor Chris Elliott, Professor of Food Safety and Director of the Institute for Global Food Security at Queen's University; Freda Magill, UFU Rural Affairs Committee Chairperson; UTV business editor Jamie Delargy and agriculture journalist Richard Wright.

Karro, which operates from Molesworth Road in Cookstown, supplies a range of products including sausages, bacon and sliced cooked meat to Henderson Wholesale and showed impressive double digit growth in its business with the company in 2014, which has continued into 2015.

Judges were impressed by Karro’s efforts to ensure Henderson’s warehouse receives only the freshest of products, therefore helping to avoid wastage, as well as its investment in innovative technology to audit products, ensure quality and capture orders.

Other winners were Willowbrook Foods in the Enjoy Local Supplier of the Year category, also runner up in the Overall Supplier of the Year category, while Irwin’s Bakery took the Tomorrow Matters Award, Allied Bakeries was named Best Direct to Store Supplier and Mash Direct took home the Brand Innovation Award.

Irwin’s Bakery was also highly commended in the Best Direct to Store Supplier and Brand Innovation categories, while Allied Bakeries was highly commended in the Enjoy Local Supplier category.

Neal Kelly, Henderson Wholesale’s Fresh Food Director, said: “We work with over 200 local suppliers and are fortunate to have developed excellent relationships with them to ensure that we bring the very best fresh food to our customers at our stores across Northern Ireland each day.

“We were keen to award those providing the very highest gold standard service and were delighted to receive so many entries across all five categories, which were then reviewed by our expert independent judges.

“Sourcing the finest fresh, local, traceable food is really important to us and we are proud that over 75% of our total range of fresh products is produced and sourced locally. Sourcing locally means that we continue to support our local suppliers and that’s great news for our economy too.”

The SPAR arena, a new addition to Balmoral this year, hosted an array of entertainment throughout the Show’s three days, with visitors able to sample SPAR’s new ‘enjoy local’ range of fresh food, enter a competition to win two ‘Ride On’ John Deere Tractors and enjoy family fun in a new children’s play area.

Paddy Doody, Sales and Marketing Director at Henderson Wholesale, said: “The Balmoral Show is one of the most important events for the agri-community in Northern Ireland each year and we are delighted that, as a platinum sponsor for the fifth year, the SPAR brand has such a strong presence there.

“Initiatives at the Show like the Local Suppliers Awards, our SPAR arena and our ‘enjoy local’ marquee help to strengthen our links with the agri-food industry as we encourage our shoppers to enjoy local produce as well as enjoying key local events.”

Karro wins Henderson Wholesale’s Supplier of the Year award at Balmoral S