Business

New compost facility for mushroom growers opens in Co Tyrone

Adrian Moynihan, head of First Trust Bank, pictured with Elaine Shaw, chief executive of Northway Mushrooms and Tom McDonnell, general manager of Northway Substrate

A NEW compost facility for mushroom producers has opened near Ballygawley, Co Tyrone, following a £25 million investment.

Northway Mushrooms, an organisation representing 20 mushroom businesses from Northern Ireland and the Republic, opened the facility with support from First Trust Bank.

The facility aims to produce high-quality compost to enable mushroom growers to improve their yields.

The organisation said the project includes technology which will neutralise odours from the composting.

Northway Mushrooms chief executive, Elaine Shaw, said growers had already seen an increase in yield.

"The facility is truly a game-changer for our local mushroom industry and gives Northway members more control over their supply chain, cushioning us against Brexit headwinds while providing us with the opportunity to fill the demand for quality UK/Irish produce," she said.

"The support from our members, the wider agri and food manufacturing industry, and our funding partner, First Trust Bank, on this project has been fantastic," she said.

"It takes knowledge sharing across sectors to innovate and through this facility, we've managed to shorten the supply chain and give our growers a solid foundation from which to grow further."

Adrian Moynihan, head of First Trust Bank, said he was impressed by Northway's approach to its business.

"Working with its members north and south, they identified an opportunity for growth and worked with industry experts and local stakeholders to bring this unique facility to fruition," he said.

"We were impressed by Northway's innovative approach to planning, problem-solving and funding, which combined with our knowledge of the sector and financial services, helped ensure the successful delivery of this world class facility.

"It also demonstrates our own commitment to supporting the business and corporate market in Northern Ireland and we are proud to be part of such a ground-breaking project."

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