08 February 2013
Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster has welcomed the success of Abernethy Butter in Dromara in winning business from high-end retailer Fortnum and Mason in London.
Abernethy’s hand churned and rolled butter was launched on Wednesday (30 January) in the iconic store in Piccadilly. The business is Abernethy’s first significant retail success in Britain.
Arlene Foster said: “This is very good news for one of our smallest food processing businesses. Winning business from such a prestigious retailer as Fortnum and Mason is a tremendously important achievement by the husband and wife team Will and Allison Abernethy.
They’ve created a highly innovative product which combines a distinctively rich taste with the heritage and provenance that shoppers are increasingly demanding.”
The small company is the only manufacturer of handchurned butter in Northern Ireland. It also recently secured a contract to supply its unique butter to Heston Blumenthal’s highly regarded Fat Duck restaurant at Bray in Berkshire.
Mr Abernethy said: “Our new business with Fortnum and Mason is a marvellous and immensely exciting endorsement of the quality of our handcrafted butter.
It’s an extremely encouraging breakthrough in Britain that will help us enormously as we work to build our business particularly outside Northern Ireland. There’s tremendous interest in the natural and richly flavoured butter that we are producing.
Each roll of butter is lovingly made just like granny did in the farmhouse kitchen so many years ago. We are both passionate about the quality, texture and taste of our butter. It’s immensely rewarding to bring a traditional technique back to life and it’s now proving extremely popular,” he added.
The business started in 2005 on the family farm at Dromara in Co Down. The artisan business achieved two gold stars at the Great Taste Awards in 2012 and won a bronze award in the dairy category at the Royal Highland Show 2012.