In our new Meet the Maker series, we're shining the light on the many gifted producers behind some of Ireland's best food and drink brands. Today, we chat to Jack Rogers of Newgrange Gold
Could you tell us a bit about the history of Newgrange Gold?
Newgrange Gold was started in 2010 by my father John Rogers, who practices as a Barrister at the bar of Ireland but also has a small farm in Meath. In 2010, he, Ian Downey and Tommy Gorman (who diligently operate the pressing system for Newgrange Gold) built the pressing and bottling unit on the farm. We started pressing seed in the summer of 2011 when we had our first harvest. In 2012, I started working in the business. Since then we have started to purchase seed from local farmers and are now available in many independent retail stores, Supermarkets and have some export business.
Why is using Irish ingredients important to your company?
Our business is focused on supplying quality Irish Oilseeds that are grown in the Boyne Valley. So Irish ingredients are the backbone of our business. We have identified a number of growers in the region that provide us with the best quality seed
What is the biggest challenge that you face as a food producer in Ireland?
There are many challenges but I think the biggest is to get noticed as a quality producer. This can take a long time to establish
What new trends do you see that are emerging in your industry?
I think natural protein sources are on-trend.
Are there any major changes you would like to see in your industry?
I would like to see more Irish oils exported globally. Ireland is too small a market and we produce a very high-quality rapeseed oil with a good flavour profile in this country. This is all down to the soil in my opinion.
What has running your own business taught you?
Probably mental resilience. You can have very dark days when things feel like they will never happen or change. But if you have a good team it is possible to do alot.
Who are some other Irish foodie brands you draw inspiration from?
There are so many and more and more so in the northeast of Ireland. I think emerging family businesses and brands like what's for Pudding and Hugh Maguire Butchers are a great inspiration. Nationally, it is hard not to be inspired by what Keoghs and Ballymaloe have done.
What’s next for the company?
We plan to explore the potential of Camelina Sativa as a product, it is a very healthy seed which could have applications in so many places.
Find out more about Newgrange Gold here