The Good Granola Company that attends Comber Farmers’ Market every month has won the Best New Retail Product for businesses with up to 25 employees at the recent Grampian Food Forum Innovation Awards. Organised by Grampian Food Forum, the awards celebrate excellence and innovation in food and drink in Aberdeenshire, Aberdeen City and Moray. This is the second time that this entrepreneurial business has been recognised as it was shortlisted in the ‘My Country Business Awards 2015’ which is organised by Country Homes and Interiors.
Owner Debbie Riley, originally from Northern Ireland but now living in Aberdeen, Scotland, started up her business a couple of years ago said, “I was in a complete fluster when my name was called out! I wasn’t expecting to win as there was tough competition in my category. I haven’t stopped grinning since I won the award and it is lovely to get recognition for all the hard work and effort in preparing and baking my granolas. It has given me a lot of confidence to know that I am on the right track to develop my business.”
Although Debbie is unable to attend Comber Farmers’ Market herself, her parents, James and Jenny Lee, set up her stall on the first Thursday of the month and her granolas have become very popular at the market. Every month, Debbie packs up her car and travels by ferry to visit her parents and deliver her award winning products. Her range includes:
Banana, Cashew and Coconut Granola; Fig, Date and Vanilla Granola ; Pineapple, Papaya and Coconut Granola; and Chocolate and Mixed Nut Granola. For further information visit http://www.thegoodgranolacompany.co.uk/
The Dogs Trust charity, which is based in Ballymena, will be coming to the next Comber Farmers’ Market on Thursday 5 November. They will be promoting responsible dog ownership, giving advice on how to be safe around dogs as well as showing off all the lovely dogs they have for rehoming. They will also be handing out neutering and microchipping vouchers plus free health check vouchers to members of the public who need them for their dogs.
For further information on the Dogs Trust and their rehoming programme please visit https://www.dogstrust.org.uk
The ladies from St Mary’s Parish Church, Comber, who serve teas, coffee and home baked scones and cakes to the customers of Comber Farmers’ Market in the church hall will be donating the money raised to McMillan Cancer Support at the next market on Thursday 1 October 2015.
Rosemary Cooper who is on the church catering committee said, “Since the market opened last year we have had a team of volunteers who bake cakes and serve morning teas in the church hall on market day. It has become a social event and meeting place for the residents of Comber who regularly turn up for a good old chat and a nice cup of tea and a bun. We don’t charge a specific price for the teas but ask people for a donation which go towards for church funds. We would like to thank all our valued customers for their generosity and support and hope that they will turn up on the 1st October to support our McMillan coffee morning and help us raise much needed funds for this worthy charity.
14th September 2015
New trader Currysauceni has joined Comber Farmers’ Market. Husband and wife team George and Lilian Kennedy set up their business in 2006 selling ready to use curry sauces. Just add meat, chicken, pork, fish or vegetables to create authentic dishes from India, Malaysia, Thailand, and Morocco in minutes. Their range includes Korma, Rogan Josh, Thai Green, Rendang, Tikka Massala, Balti, Jalfrezi, Madras, Thai Red and Makhani (sauce for butter chicken). The sauces are gluten free (except rendang), nut free, and contain no msg or artificial preservatives.
After her first day at the market, Lilian said, “We have been wanting to come to Comber Farmers’ Market for ages. We were delighted when we got the call to say that there was a space available. Our first day was fantastic and I couldn’t believe the interest in our curry sauces and how much we sold. We are already looking forward to the next one on Thursday 1 October.”
3rd August 2015
The next Comber Farmers’ Market takes place on Thursday 6 August 2015, St Mary’s Parish Church car park, the Square, Comber, 9.00am – 1.30pm. We are delighted to welcome newcomer Farmhouse Treats from Moneyreagh who make home baked cakes, tray bakes, tarts and meringues. Come along and try these tasty treats!
6th July 2015
A big thank you to everybody who attended our 1st birthday market on 2 July which was a huge success made possible by a Community Festival grant from Ards and North Down Borough Council. We were delighted to welcome Michele Shirlow of Good Food NI who came along to cut the birthday cake and help us celebrate this significant milestone. We were also joined by Valhalla Theatre Company who came dressed as Ulster Scots circa 1640; Chris Irwin from Belfast Metropolitan College who ran good food workshops for children; and the Tammy Conn School of Dance who performed a flash mob dance in the middle of the car park.
29 June 2015
Comber Farmers’ Market will celebrate its first birthday on Thursday 2 July 2015 in St Mary’s Parish Church, Comber, 9.00am – 1.30pm. With funding from Ards and North Down Council, an extended programme has been organised and includes:
- 11.00am Fun Food Workshop for children
- 11.30am Fun Food Workshop for children
- 12. 00pm Cheese Making Demonstration by Leggygowan Farm
- 12.30pm Cookery Demonstration using products from the market
In addition, Valhalla Street Theatre Company will perform sketches between 11.00am – 1.00pm.
Bunting and balloons will decorate the stalls and there will be lots of surprise freebies for children. Plus Comber Earlies potatoes are in full season! Come along and get your spuds and join in the fun.
28 June 2015
Award winning Cavanagh Eggs from near Newtownbutler, Co Fermanagh, will be joining Comber Farmers’ Market on Thursday 2 July 2015. This family run business, which was established in March 2012, are dedicated to providing the best possible living environment and feed for their hens.
Husband and wife team, John and Eileen Hall, were awarded a Gold Star from the Great Taste Awards in 2014 for the quality, flavour and freshness of their golden yolked free range eggs. Their hens roam freely outside and are fed a high quality ration which are produced to Lion Code standard. Cavanagh Eggs are in high demand from top restaurants and chefs throughout Northern Ireland including the Merchant Hotel, Belfast, and Lough Erne Hotel and Golf Resort, Enniskillen.
Eileen Hall said, “We are so pleased to be joining Comber Market as we have a had many requests from the Comber and Newtownards area. Now people will be able to come and meet us at the market and buy their eggs directly from us.”
31 May 2015
Staff members from Northern Ireland Tourist Board will visit the next Comber Farmers’ Market on Thursday 4 June. Laura McCorry, Director of Product Development, and Rosemary Lightbody, Markets and Product Experience Development Manager have been invited by Comber Regeneration Community Partnership to visit the market and see for themselves how the market is contributing to the local tourism economy.
Alderman Deborah Girvan, chairperson of Comber Farmers’ Market Committee explained, “I met Laura at a tourism seminar a couple of months ago and thought that it would be beneficial for Comber Farmers’ Market to build stronger relationships with the Northern Ireland Tourist Board. By linking with the major tourism organisation for Northern Ireland we hope to promote the market to a wider audience through their extensive network and bring more tourists to Comber. Once they have had an opportunity to walk around the market and see the variety and quality of artisan food that is sold, they will meet with members of the Comber Regeneration Community Partnership to discuss how we can do business together.
I May 2015
Four new traders will be joining the next Comber Farmers’ Market on Thursday 7 May 2015 which will be held in St Mary’s Parish Church car park, the Square, 9.00am – 1.00pm.
They include Leggygowan Goats Cheese from Saintfield; Ivan McCutcheon Landscapes from Comber who will be selling bedding plants, hanging baskets, and some vegetable plants such as tomatoes, peas, beans and chilies; The Good Granola Company from Aberdeen who make granola breakfast cereal in small batches which ensures that the texture, quality and flavours are consistent; and Indie Fude, a local food business based in Comber who sell a range of artisan food products sourced from around Ireland including kale, beetroot, parsnip and carrot crisps, Dulce de Leche caramel and butterscotch sauces, teas, coffees, edible seaweed products, handmade chocolates, spice rubs and marinades, and raw chocolate ganache.