FOOD companies seeking to boost revenue are most likely to launch new products and services in the coming year and least likely to raise prices, according to new research.
The survey by PwC and the non-profit body Love Irish Food found most executives at small and medium-sized food enterprises are optimistic of growth in 2020.
Some 88pc of the approximately 70 executives polled said they expect to grow sales, including 34pc who expect to see more than 10pc gains in revenue next year. By contrast, 10pc expect revenues to remain the same and only 2pc foresee a decline.
When asked to choose what activities beyond organic growth would drive revenue gains next year, 22pc said they would launch new products and services, 19pc would seek operational efficiencies, 15pc would grow new markets, and only 6pc would raise prices.
“The survey highlights evidence of optimism among Irish SMEs around growth into 2020, notwithstanding a difficult trading environment,” said Love Irish Food executive director Kieran Rumley.
“There are considerable challenges in areas such as availability of skills across the board from operational to technical to management.
“This in turn highlights the need for a greater take-up of available apprenticeships in the industry.”
When asked what level of investment they intended to make in 2020 to grow their business, 63pc said under €500,000, 17pc €500,000-€1m, 6pc €1m-€3m, 10pc over €3m and only 4pc nothing.
“It’s encouraging to see that the majority of survey respondents are looking to invest in their companies in the coming year,” Mr Rumley said. “For certain food sectors, this represents a significant growth opportunity, specifically for those import substitution sectors.
“However, behind these positive signals there remains the worrying inability of Irish food producers to recover adequate costs, forcing them to continue to operate on even tighter margins.”
When asked if they had delayed investment because of Brexit-related uncertainties, 31pc said yes, 69pc no.
And the vast majority, 84pc, said they have an environmental sustainability plan in place and will use it to improve green efficiencies in 2020.
Mr Rumley said: “Food companies are taking the sustainability challenge seriously with many planning to invest in initiatives to improve the environment. This, together with the strong regional dispersion of the food industry base, contributes greatly to overall sustainability.”
Love Irish Food boasts nearly 100 member brands accounting for over 12,000 jobs in communities all across Ireland. From artisan producers to global food players, Love Irish Food members play a vital role in helping Ireland’s food industry at a time when the Irish economy rebuilds post pandemic.
Exterion Media is a market leading company in Outdoor advertising in Ireland. The company has pioneered the development of digital Out-of-Home in Ireland and delivers traditional and digital formats in the Retail environment.
As part of the ongoing effort to get its brand message across to consumers, Love Irish Food, Exterion Media, Checkout Publications, Innovative Solutions and Bank of Ireland have teamed up to offer its member food and drink producers a big helping hand in promoting their brands to the Irish consumer in 2021. We are offering one Love Irish Food member company a Brand Award of €150,000.
The award is made up of advertising space from Exterion Media to the value of €125,000 This will be scheduled across Exterion Media’s Retail portfolio which includes traditional 6 sheets and digital screens.The Campaign will appear 3 bursts of advertising on Retail PurchasePoints & Retail DPods (digital).
Love Irish Food & Exterion Media will work with you to plan the optimum campaign for your brand given your business objectives.
In addition, the Love Irish Food advertising agency, Owens DDB will provide a defined amount of strategic and creative content for the campaign up to a defined value of €8,000. The winner will also receive a bespoke product sensory research package from Innovate Solutions to a value of €5,000. The winner will also receive a double page feature spread in leading FMCG magazine, Checkout, one of the most read publications by retail trade buyers. Finally, the winning brand will benefit by a financial wellbeing health check for its business from Bank of Ireland from a senior team of consultants.
We are looking for the brand for whom the prize will deliver the greatest return. The winner will have a national food/drink brand with a strong national sales distribution. Your brand may not have the advertising budget to get your brand message to your target audience just yet. This award will help take your brand to the next stage in brand development and this is where we can help.
In 1,500 words or less tell us why this campaign should go to your brand. Entrants need to present a sound business and marketing case. As the success of most brands is dependent on passion, we would like you to demonstrate your drive and passion for your brand.
There are two stages involved in the online entry process:
Stage 1 – Registration will require you to submit the basic details of your company and brand. To enter please complete the online entry form featured on loveirishfood.ie
Stage 2 – Submission requires the submission of your completed entry. To submit please complete the online entry form featured on loveirishfood.ie
Closing date for receipt of registration is 5.30pm Friday 3rd December, 2021 and the closing date for completed submissions is 5-30pm Friday 14th January, 2022. Judging will take place w/c 17th January, 2022 and the winner will be notified on Monday 24th January, 2022.
Try to include as much detail as possible including the areas mentioned below.
Make sure to cover such areas as,
Most importantly what practical difference you believe a nationally targeted consumer advertising campaign to the value of €125,000 from Exterion Media would make to your brand.
You can also provide any creative direction that you feel would assist your case.
Antoinette O’Callaghan Exterion Media
Kieran Rumley Love Irish Food
A shortlist of competitors will be brought forward to be interviewed by the judging panel. The number of these companies is at the discretion of the judging panel. Judging will be undertaken remotely.
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