Deli-Lites cooks up 20 new jobs in £250,000 hub investment
WARRENPOINT-based food-to-go firm Deli-Lites Ireland is gearing up for international growth thanks to a £250,000 investment in a new innovation hub and major refurbishment at its headquarters in a move which is creating 20 full-time jobs.
The hub will be used for product-development workshops and demonstrations with clients, and it also replicates the retail environment to showcase the company’s growing product range, which includes sandwiches, wraps, bespoke bowls, juices, salad bowls, flatbreads and hot eats, as well as products from the in-house state-of-the-art artisan bakery.
The strategy will see Deli-Lites Ireland expand into new international markets with export orders for its baked-goods and hot eats currently in the pipeline to Germany, Holland, and the Middle East.
Chief executive and co-founder Brian Reid, said: “As a chef-led business which is focused on constantly developing new and exciting products and flavour combinations, innovation is at the heart of everything we do.
“This latest investment highlights our commitment to continued growth and development, and our emphasis on client-focused servicing, which has helped us grow and become a trusted supplier to so many customers.
“The innovation hub allows our customers to get a real feel for the retail experience and product offering, which can be adapted to appeal to all tastes and dietary requirements, including vegan, dairy free, low carb, high protein and gluten free.”
As well as the new innovation hub, the investment includes a major refurbishment of the company’s headquarters and the addition of new offices.
Deli-Lites, founded in 1999 and currently employing more than 250 people, produces around 15 million hand-made sandwiches, wraps and salads annually for major retail customers such as Sainsbury’s, Debenhams, Boots and Applegreen, as well as local food service companies.
Meanwhile SuperValu, Centra and Mace are celebrating following the opening of the 100th Frank and Honest site in the north following a £2.25m investment over the last two years (the milestone was reached at Lilley’s Centra at Drumlyon, near Enniskillen).
The first Frank and Honest machine was installed in Northern Ireland in 2016 and since then the gourmet coffee has become the biggest selling on-the-go coffee brand on the island of Ireland, with one cup sold every 10 seconds.
Musgrave has invested in state of the art bean to cup Swiss-made Eversys coffee machines for all of its 700-strong Frank and Honest sites.