Dawn Meats was delighted to support the NFU Scotland’s Annual Dinner, which took place at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Glasgow as part of the Union’s Conference and AGM on Monday 6th February 2017.

Over 500 diners were served up a showcase menu of some of the very best food and drink that Scotland has to offer including our very own Caledonia Crown PGI Scotch Beef which featured as the main course on the menu.

Isla Roebuck, Operations Director of Dawn Meats commented: “It was a privilege to supply this year’s NFU annual dinner with our Caledonia Crown PGI Scotch Beef and a fantastic opportunity to showcase to guests the exceptional quality and reputation that our Caledonia Crown PGI Scotch Beef delivers time after time.”   

NFU Scotland, Chief Executive, Scott Walker commented: “Every day of the year our farmers are working hard to produce the high-quality food and drink that is available right on our doorsteps. This year’s annual dinner is once again a celebration of that passion and enthusiasm. I am particularly grateful to the companies throughout Scotland who have sponsored or supplied the produce for this year’s dinner. I know that our Scottish farmers take immense pride in what they grow and produce, testament to the thriving food and drink industry we have in this country. I am very much aware that consumers, here and abroad, recognise and value the provenance and quality of the food we produce here in Scotland, something that the Union will continue to champion.”

NFU Scotland, President, Andrew McCornick commented: “We wanted to use this opportunity to showcase the highest quality produce from Scottish farms and this was achieved thanks to Dawn Meats generous contribution of top quality Caledonia Crown beef for our dinner which drew the highest level of compliments from all who attended”.

Pictured (l-r): Gary Mitchell, Vice President NFU Scotland, Isla Roebuck, Dawn Meats, Andrew McCornick, President NFU Scotland and Martin Kennedy, Vice President NFU Scotland

The 2nd annual Great Agri-Food Debate will take place at 2.30pm on Wednesday 22nd of February in the Garret Fitzgerald Debating Chamber in University College Dublin (UCD).  Food and agriculture students from Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) will join students from UCD to debate the motion: “Brexit will be good for the Irish Agri-Food Industry”.  

This is the second year that UCD will play host to the Great Agri-Food Debate, a joint initiative of Dawn Meats & McDonald’s Ireland and it follows a successful inaugural event last year. 

While the Irish food and drinks industry waits to see what will unfold as Britain exits the European Union, companies are developing plans to reconfigure their businesses and minimize the downside risks.  The ideas shared by the students will add new perspectives to an already dynamic discussion.   

Justin McCarthy, Editor of the Irish Farmers Journal, will Chair the debate and the judging panel will comprise Niall Browne, CEO, Dawn Meats; Adrian Crean, Managing Director, McDonald’s Ireland and Tara McCarthy, CEO Bord Bia.  Dawn Meats and McDonald’s Ireland are co-sponsoring the event.

Commenting Niall Browne, CEO said; “We held this debate for the first time last year, and I think we were all struck by the vigour of the debate and the knowledge of the participants. We have long known that our 3rd level institutions are a rich source of talent and innovative thinking and with Britain’s exit from the EU on the horizon, it’s a key issue on which students should have an informed opinion.”

Commenting Adrian Crean, MD McDonald’s Ireland said; “It’s great to be heading back to UCD again this year to encourage debate of one of the really key issues of the day. McDonald’s in Ireland is going from strength to strength as a business and like many other companies Brexit is a challenge on the horizon. It’s important that we listen to the views of the next generation of business leaders and all stakeholders as we consider the possible impact on the business environment.”  

Following on from the success of last year’s debate, there is expected to be great interest.  All are welcome to attend.

Dawn Meats are delighted to have once again been selected as “National Public Champion” and will represent Ireland in the 2016/2017 European Business Awards sponsored by RSM.

The European Business Awards are widely recognised as the showcase for Europe’s most dynamic companies and as part of the adjudication process we now look forward to sharing our experience and business success in greater detail with the judging panel.

To be successful for this coveted award, public votes are critical.  Voting is now open but will close on the 1st of March.

Vote to support Dawn Meats by clicking here: http://www.businessawardseurope.com/vote/detail-new/the-award-for-environmental-corporate-sustainability-1/20776

Thank you in advance for your support.

 

Media

Health Week 2016

Monday, 10 October 2016 18:23

Dawn Meats were delighted to host its second Health and Wellbeing Week in October. 

The emphasis for this year was placed on increasing awareness for the ‘Common Cancers’ including: Bowel, Breast, Prostate & Testicular and Skin.

Each day covered a different topic and was designed to be informative, educating employees about the causes, symptoms, testing and treatments available. The importance of hydration and exercise were also highlighted.

Throughout the week a variety of engaging activities and competitions were held including: Wear Pink/Blue to Work, lunchtime walks, park runs, smoothie bike challenge, pedometer challenge, penalty shootout challenge, coffee morning, health clinics, cookery demonstrations and free fruit and water.

Across the week Dawn Meats also acknowledged the support of a wide range of external companies who shared their knowledge and encouraged employees to participate with engaging presentations and competitions. These included, Marie Keating Foundation, Irish Cancer Society, Cancer Research UK, British Heart Foundation, St John’s Ambulance, Smoothie Bike Hire and Fitbit.

 

Centre Stage at the Breeders' Cup 2016

Thursday, 03 November 2016 18:07

The 2016 Breeders' Cup World Championships was held for a record ninth time at Santa Anita Park, LA from the 4th to the 6th of November. On the eve of the first day's racing, a sixth annual international culinary event, A Taste of the World, was held at the historic film studios of Warner Brothers.

Ireland's involvement in the Taste of the World at the Breeders' Cup is co-ordinated by Good Food Ireland and was supported by Bord Bia and Dawn Meats. 

Award winning Irish chefs’ Ed Cooney, The Merrion Hotel, Dublin and Martin Shanahan, Fishy Fishy, Kinsale prepared 1,500 individual servings of grass-fed, quality assured fillet of Irish beef. Ireland’s involvement in the event has been coordinated by Good Food Ireland and supported by Bord Bia and Dawn Meats

This is the 6th year that Good Food Ireland has been invited to represent Ireland at the much celebrated culinary event which takes place during the Breeders’ Cup World Championships — the richest two days in sports. This is the first time that Irish beef will be served, following the opening of the US market access in January 2015.

Speaking at the launch today, Margaret Jeffares, Founder, Good Food Ireland said “I am delighted that Bord Bia and Dawn Meats have partnered with Good Food Ireland and facilitated this high profile showcase for Irish beef. Many film and TV celebrities, horse breeders, owners and other VIPs from around the world will attend this exceptional tasting event featuring cuisine from 15 participating countries.”

Meanwhile Paul Nolan, Dawn Meats added “this event provides terrific opportunity to introduce our premium grass fed Irish beef to such a discerning US and international audience. The “Taste of the World” attracts global media coverage and we are hopeful that this exposure will help us build brand awareness and recognition in this new export market.”

Dawn Meats has become the latest organisation to pledge its support to Courtauld 2025. Dawn Meats will work in partnership with a range of retailers, food service, trade and local authority signatories under the newly formed Meat Working Group to reach the 2025 targets, pooling expertise and innovation.

Courtauld 2025 is an initiative led by the waste prevention body, WRAP that seeks to address sustainability challenges facing the food and drink sector. It has the potential to generate savings of £20bn for the UK food supply chain.

The food and drink industry faces a range of challenges such as access to water; losses in the supply chain; and waste - as evidenced by the 10% of meat purchases (240,000 tonnes) that are thrown away annually in UK homes. These challenges provide a real opportunity for businesses and other stakeholders to take leadership that will benefit all.

Courtauld 2025's UK ambition is threefold:

Achieve a 20% reduction in food and drink waste

Achieve a 20% reduction in GHG emissions

A reduction in impact association with water use in the supply chain

Commenting Marcus Sherreard, UK Commercial Director, Dawn Meats said, "Today is an important milestone in our sustainability plan, which again sees Dawn Meats collaborating with other stakeholders who share similar aspirations and objectives on continuous improvement across the entire supply chain. At Dawn Meats we truly believe that issues around supply chain sustainability can only be addressed collaboratively, and we are delighted that WRAP has provided the food and drinks industry with this opportunity to tackle issues related to resource efficiency. We are committed to working together with our partners on the Meat Working Group to identify and develop best practice in our industry in the coming years."

Commenting, Peter Maddox, Director at WRAP said, "It is great to see support for Courtauld 2025 growing at such a pace, and it is imperative that it does so, given the significant economic contribution of the food and drink industry. We are delighted to welcome Dawn Meats on board. Dawn has demonstrated a keen understanding of the importance of sustainability to the bottom line, as well as an impressive capacity for innovation in this area. They will be important partners as we work towards a more sustainable resource efficient economy."

Dawn Meats was awarded the Excellence in Environment award at the 13th Annual Corporate Social Responsibility Awards which took place on Thursday September 1st 2016 in the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, Burlington Road, Dublin. The annual CSR Awards celebrate the important contribution that CSR practices make to our society and Dawn Meats was pleased to be nominated in the large indigenous company category for Excellence in Environment along with DAA, ESB and Roadbridge.

The CSR Awards applications were reviewed by two separate and independent judging panels, made up of experts in the field of CSR. These 2 panels separately selected the shortlisted projects and companies and from this list a second panel ultimately decided on category winners.
 
The adjudication panel was looking for projects which were innovative, were well thought out, engaged staff at all levels and utilised a variety of resources in delivering a positive impact on the business and the wider community.

Commenting on the awards Group Commercial Director Richard Clinton said: ”At Dawn Meats we expect all colleagues to engage with the CSR agenda and actively contribute with community projects which have a positive impact both on the business itself and the community in which we operate. The fossil fuel free and zero waste to landfill ambitions which have been achieved in 2016 are a tangible result of our commitment in this area and we look forward to further progress in the coming years. All colleagues can be extremely proud of this award which is just recognition of their efforts in recent years.”

George Coles of Red Oak Farm in Westbury, Northamptonshire was the runner up in the Outstanding Producer Award for Innovation at the M&S Farming for the Future Awards. The awards ceremony was held at the Royal Welsh Show, Builth Wells, Wales.

The M&S Farming for the Future Awards recognise farmers who show the utmost dedication to farming sustainability. The Outstanding Producer Award rewards farmers who show dedication to the 4 E’s – Efficiency, Ethics, Education, and Environment.

Red Oak Farm is a supplier to Dawn Meats’ Cardington facility in Bedfordshire. The farm works a combination of grassland and arable crop production, and a 120 strong beef herd.  Coles plans to expand the herd to 200 breeding cattle, and is developing a pedigree Red Aberdeen Angus herd using imported embryos from Argentina.

Coles has embraced new technology as a means of improving the health, welfare and productivity of his cattle, such as a thermal imaging camera for early identification of hip and foot problems in cattle, allowing for targeted treatment and lower antibiotic reliance. He has also employed use of the Moocall alert system which provides him with advance notification if a cow is calving. This system uses a sensor attached to the cow’s tail to alert the farmer by text message when a cow is about to calve, ensuring that he can be present and of assistance if required.

Coles is committed to constantly improving his own knowledge of sustainable beef production and is an active member of three beef discussion groups. He is a member of the AHDB Better Returns Programme, and has hosted several events for AHDB Beef & Lamb at Red Oak Farm. He has also pioneered the use of a new cordless vacuum pump for milking, which allows farmers to milk cows quickly without risk of being kicked, and hopes to offer this product for sale in the UK market shortly.

Commenting on the award, Mr. George Coles, Red Oak Farms: “It is an honour to be runner up in the Outstanding Producer award category on behalf of Red Oak Farms and Dawn Meats. It is extremely rewarding to see the progress that can be made in cattle farming by embracing new technology and investing in our most valuable assets, our livestock. I have always believed in the need to innovate to ensure the farm is as productive and as successful as possible, and I am very pleased to see our efforts recognised today.”

Commenting Mr. Isla Roebuck, Operations Director Dawn Meats (UK): “George Coles is worthy of the recognition he has received in this award, and exemplifies exactly what we look for in our beef supply chain. Sustainability is essential to the future of agriculture, and we are very fortunate to work with suppliers like Red Oak Farms whose principles and commitment to innovation and sustainability are in line with our own”

David Ward of Bridgetown Farm in Iddesleigh, Devon, was awarded The Prince’s Countryside Fund Award in England and Wales at the M&S Farming for the Future Awards, at the Royal Welsh Show, in Builth Wells, Wales.

Bridgetown Farm is a supplier to Dawn Meats’ West Devon facility. David runs a family farm in Devon, farming both beef and lamb, where he manages a herd of 140 suckler cattle and 140 breeding ewes. David has dedicated 40 years of his life to working with the ‘Farms for City Children’ charity, which offers urban children from the age 9 – 11, the unique opportunity to spend a week living and working on a farm in the heart of the countryside, to gain an understanding of rural life, food production and animal welfare. The children come to David’s farm from 31 schools across London, Portsmouth, Barnstaple and Plymouth.
Every morning David picks up the school children and their teachers, from Nethercott House, the Farms for City Children residence, in a specially converted tractor and trailer and they spend the day working on the farm interacting with the farm animals, working in the outdoors and enjoying the fresh air. At any time there are between 36-40 children and teachers working on the farm under David’s guidance.

M&S Farming for the Future is a programme of initiatives which champions sustainability and innovation. The programme is designed to help farmers identify opportunities for improvement, increase their profitability and provide a sustainable supply chain that can continue to deliver quality and innovation for the long term. 

David Ward, Owner of Bridgetown Farm said: “I am absolutely delighted to be awarded The Prince’s Countryside Fund Award at the M&S Farming for the Future Awards. The charity is very close to my heart, and over the past 40 years it has been extremely rewarding to see children spending a week on our farm getting a real understanding of where their food comes from, sustainable farming and rural life.  These children leave our farm with important information that they can pass on to future generations.”

Isla Roebuck, Operations Director, Dawn Meats (UK), said: “We are very proud of Bridgetown Farm’s win at today’s M&S Farming for the Future Awards and of David’s commitment to educating children about farming, the countryside and food production. At Dawn, we are fully committed to ensuring all of our products have traceability from farm gate to plate, and believe that knowing where your food comes from is of the highest importance. We congratulate David for equipping the hundreds of children who come through his farm every year with this knowledge, teaching them the importance of food production and broadening their horizons by becoming familiar with rural life.”

Messrs Parkinson have been awarded the inaugural Marks & Spencer / Dawn Meats Swaledale Producer of the Year award 2016 at the Swaledale Lamb producer meeting in Malham in the Yorkshire Dales.

The Parkinson family farm at Hareden, is in the heart of the Trough of Bowland, in Lancashire. Most of the farm land is moorland, rising to 1800 feet above sea level.  There is only a small percentage of meadowland, the remainder is hill pasture. The 1,030 hectare farm, is tenanted from United Utilities, and has approximately 1,000 Swaledale breeding ewes and a beef suckler herd.

Dawn Meats has worked with the Swaledale Lamb Society for a number of years developing and supplying bespoke Marks & Spencer Swaledale Lamb for their Speciality Lamb range. The period of supply is between January and early May each season and the sixth season has just finished.

Anna Playfair- Hannay, M&S Agricultural Manager commented: “I’m delighted to be able to present this award to Messrs Parkinson. The continued support and collaboration we have with the Swaledale Lamb group means we can continue to offer our customers something very special and unique to Marks & Spencer.”

Mr. Isla Roebuck, Operations Director Dawn Meats (UK) commented: “We have now had six seasons of Swaledale Lamb in the Marks & Spencer Speciality lamb range which has been very successful with our customers. In order to recognise the efforts of the Swaledale Lamb producers involved in this supply chain we have presented a cup to the producer that has had the best hit rate for weight and grade over the period of supply from January to early May this year. Congratulations to Messrs Parkinson on winning the cup this year and we look forward to next season which will be our seventh.”