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Welcome to the November edition of Bord Bia's Ireland Market Foodservice Newsletter.

A reminder that our 2021 Irish Foodservice Seminar is taking place in the RDS Dublin on Wednesday, December 8th 2021 from 10AM – 3PM. The final agenda and speaker line up has been confirmed and is available on our website here. Please note that in-person numbers are limited and close to capacity at this stage.  We will also be live-streaming the event for those that cannot make it in person. For more information and to confirm your place, visit our registration page here.

 

General Industry News

 

Inflation to breach 5pc for first time since the boom years

Irish Independent - 29.10.2021

Annual inflation is set to breach the 5pc mark in Ireland in October, for the first time in two decades. According to a flash estimate from the EU’s statistics agency, Eurostat, Irish prices are expected to rise 5.1pc in October. The figure was up from a 13-year high of 3.7pc reached in September. Annual inflation figures compare the current month with the same month a year earlier. Average inflation in the 19-member eurozone is predicted to hit 4.1pc this month on the back of a 23.5pc jump in energy prices.

 

Unemployment in Ireland falls to 7.9%

The Business Post – 04.11.2021

Unemployment in Ireland fell to 7.9 per cent, it’s lowest since the onset of the pandemic, according to most recent data published by the Central Statistics Office (CSO). This is against the 20.3 per cent rate recorded in October 2020. Around 205,000 people were estimated to be either out of work or in receipt of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (Pup) during October 2021. When excluding Pup recipients, October’s unemployment rate stood at 5.2 per cent, the statistics agency reported.

 

Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) & Pub Sector

 

McDonald's sets target of reaching net zero by 2050

RTE - 4.10.2021

Fast food giant McDonald's has set a target of having net zero emissions by 2050.However, the company's operations in the UK and Ireland aim to achieve the milestone ten years earlier, in 2040. It launched a new business and sustainability strategy underpinning the target, called Plan for Change, which outlines the steps McDonald's UK and Ireland is taking now and in the future, alongside deadlines and commitments. The company says its plan includes science-based emissions reduction targets. It will also join the SBTi Business Ambition for 1.5°C campaign and the United Nations Race to Zero campaign.

 

Hospitality sector must comply with Covid rules to stay open – Varadkar

RTE - 09.11.2021

Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise Leo Varadkar has said that if the hospitality sector wants to remain open it needs to comply with Covid rules. The Minister said there are plans to "step up" inspections by the Health and Safety Authority to ensure premises are checking Covid passes. He appealed to those in the sector to enforce the checks. Mr Varadkar told RTÉ's News at One that the compliance capacity in the HSA is being increased, he also said that while most premises are complying, those not in compliance will face enforcement actions.

 

Hotel & Restaurant Sector

 

Passenger numbers may not fully recover until 2025, daa says

RTE – 20.10.2021

It could be 2025 before the number of passengers using Dublin and Cork airports is back to pre-pandemic levels, the chairman designate of the daa has said. Speaking at the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Transport and Communications, Basil Geoghegan said optimists have predicted the recovery could happen quicker, returning to 2019 levels in 2023, but he thinks it will take longer. Mr Geoghegan said the two airports are currently back to around 50% of 2019 passenger numbers, although some days, he added, this figure was higher.

 

Premier Inn opens first hotel in Dublin City Centre

BusinessTraveller.com – 3.11.2021

Premier Inn has opened its first hotel in Dublin city centre, with four others set to follow from late 2022. Premier Inn Dublin City Centre is located in a renovated Victorian terrace building on South Great George Street. The site also includes a restaurant and bar serving breakfast and dinner. Simon Ewins, Managing Director of Premier Inn, commented on the opening: “We are thrilled to open our first hotel in Dublin city centre, right in the heart of this amazing city. Dublin is known for being one of the world’s most captivating, lively and historic cities, so we couldn’t be more delighted to open our doors here and we see a very bright future for Premier Inn in the city.

 

Casual Dining & Contract Catering Sector

 

Just Eat’s Irish arm pays €10m dividend to parent as profits jump

Irish Times – 21.10.2021

Just Eat’s Irish arm paid a €10 million dividend to its parent last year after profits and revenues jumped sharply during the pandemic. Just Eat Ireland Limited employed an average of 35 people at the end of 2020, as against 44 in the prior year. In the Republic of Ireland, Just Eat has over 2,600 takeaway restaurants online and its app has been downloaded over 2.5 million times since it launched locally in May 2008.

 

Vertical farm Emerald Greens in Compass Group deal

RTE – 11.10.2021

Compass Group Ireland has agreed a deal with Emerald Greens, the country's first commercial vertical farmer, which will supporting the future of sustainable horticulture and help reduce food miles. Brian O'Reilly, a former mushroom farmer, and his brother Aidan, launched the first commercial hydroponic farm in Ireland to grow basil, baby leaf mixes and microgreens 365 days a year. Operating under the new Emerald Greens brand, the brothers are using cutting-edge indoor farming technology to grow crops sustainably year-round from their base in Co Tipperary. Crops are grown in soil-free vertical layers in former mushroom tunnels using hydroponics. As a result of the deal, Emerald Greens will see production capacity rise by 20%, which will allow the O'Reilly’s to expand their vertical farming business with the addition of a second growing tunnel.