Business

Mash Direct cooks up a Caribbean flavour in fresh deal with Asda

Regional buying manager for Asda NI, Brain Conway, pictured with Clare Forster, head of marketing, Mash Direct
Gail Bell

CO Down family-owned food company Mash Direct has landed a major contract with Asda to supply five new lines of its award-winning produce to Northern Ireland stores.

The Comber-based supplier has extended its offering of easy-cook traditional vegetables with three new product developments – sweet potato mash Caribbean style (350g), leek and potato mash (3350g) and roast potatoes (400g).

Shoppers with larger families will also be able to enjoy a wider range of exclusive-to-Asda pack sizes, with the introduction of mashed turnip and carrot and parsnip – all steam-cooked to retain taste, texture and nutritional benefits.

Clare Foster, head of marketing at Mash Direct, said six generations of farming expertise was evident in all farm products, helping make them popular dishes with discerning supermarket customers.

"Made using heritage vegetable varieties, chosen for flavour rather than appearance, the popularity of our locally-sourced range has seen Mash Direct grow into a £16 million turnover company," she said.

"Mash Direct has continuing expansion plans and has recently completed its new 25,000 square foot on-site factory.

"We have also gained an understanding of what the Asda shopper is looking for and are able to respond with new and innovative products."

The new contract builds upon the firm's existing relationship with the supermarket giant, having worked closely with the chain over the past 10 years on initiatives such as the Supplier Development Academy and the Sustain & Save programme.

Asda NI regional buying manager Brian Conway highlighted how Mash Direct's 120-plus award wins and 23 products already listed on shelves had proven the company's popularity with Asda shoppers.

"By answering consumer demand for easy-to-prepare dishes which are free from artificial colourings, flavourings and preservatives, Mash Direct side dishes offer convenience and value for money," he said.

"They are a tasty addition to any dinner table and the new Caribbean sweet potato dish is sure to be an instant hit."

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