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New Jobs For Cutting-Edge Seafood Company

IRELAND - An innovative new seafood product developed by Keohanes of Bantry with the assistance of BIM's Seafood Development Centre (SDC) has led to the creation of 12 new jobs for the west cork company. Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Mr Simon Coveney, yesterday (Monday 9 May 2011) officially cut the ribbon at Keohanes new processing factory where the twelve full-time jobs are located.

The new product is a microwaveable fresh fish product, the first of its kind in Ireland and has been eagerly taken up by many of the multiples since its creation. Projected sales over the next three years are valued at 3 million euro as the company targets customers both on the home market and abroad.

Minister Coveney congratulated the father and son team that head up Keohanes of Bantry saying, "This is a wonderful boost for the seafood sector and a positive indication that the industry will play an important role in the future recovery of the Irish economy.

"The dedication and focus that the Keohanes have shown in bringing this exemplary product to the market, combined with their determined business focus is a testament to the calibre of company that is found in our seafood sector. BIM as the seafood development agency has been strongly advocating that seafood companies need to focus on adding value to their products and I am delighted to see the fruits of the work in the SDC paying such beneficial dividends".

The latest figures from BIM show that prepack fresh fish now accounts for 68 per cent of the total fresh fish market in Ireland and this new product range fits the market need perfectly adding total convenience to the equation.

The overall value of the Irish seafood sector is worth 700 million euro annually and BIM estimate that an additional 50 million euro in value added seafood sales can be created by 2012. The industry already employs 11,000 people and it is on target to create 3,000 new jobs by 2020 by increasingly adding value to our products and developing our aquaculture industry.

BIM's chief executive, Jason Whooley echoed the Ministers congratulations to Keohanes adding that, "The significance of these jobs and any others generated by developments in the seafood industry is that they are created from a wonderful renewable natural resource .

"The demand for seafood is on the up and increasing more quickly than any other traded good in the world! BIM are committed to ensuring the Irish seafood sector is perfectly poised to capitalise on this demand - this industry will create long-term, sustainable job opportunities for people".

The innovative packaging on the product allows for extended shelflife up to ten days once it hits the shelf. It also allows for ease of handling for the consumer and provides complete visibility of the supreme freshness of the fish so the customer can see exactly what they are getting. Many of the products come with complimentary flavoured butters and sauces and cover a wide range of species including salmon, prawns and various whitefish as seasons allow.

the Fish Site Editor

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