When I started researching this article, I spoke to Pat Roche who is the contact name for applications and enquiries regarding the Gorey and Enniscorthy Farmers markets. You can follow them on their Facebook page on Wexfordfarmersmarkets.com
The Gorey Farmers market was set up in 2003-04 and has been successfully trading since then in Gorey Community School car park each Saturday from 8am – 1pm.
The market in Gorey has created an important base for local food\craft producers to sell their produce and is also a showcase for local food producers who want to grow and develop their business. Over the years several have gone on to become large enterprises. They are now supplying large retail food chains and creating local employment.
The Gorey Farmers market offers a range of fresh food, including meats, vegetables, fruit, breads\cakes as well as fresh locally produced milk\dairy products. You will also find a selection of fish, home-made jams and preserves and nutoriously healthy nutritious snacks.
In season shrubs, plants, cut flowers and a seasonal selection of crafts are available for sale.
We all love the idea of the fresh organic locally grown vegetables versus the mass production versions forced with aquaponic fertiliser in massive glass houses and we can purchase lots of local produce at Gorey Farmers Market on Saturday mornings.
I visited there on 07/01/2023 and spoke to some of the people involved.
FORTUNES FARM FRESH PRODUCTS: I was really impressed when I met Seamus Fortune of Fortunes Farm Fresh Products from Ballyhogue who grow all their own vegetables and sell them at the Farmers market on Saturday mornings. I just loved the freshly cut cabbage, the very nice cauliflowers, broccoli, brussel sprouts, leeks, carrots, onions, and lots more. I was equally impressed that they were all priced very keenly at 3 for 5 euros or what about 12 pieces of fruit for 5 euros. You just must see this huge display of local produce.
I noticed that they have a regular loyal following who bring along their own baskets and the veggies are placed therein with no needless rolls of cling film or plastic bags being used to wrap them. This is sustainability in action and in addition is helping to save the seas and planet from further plastic pollution. This is true environment conservation in action and must be lauded.
Is there anything as nice as the real fresh organic egg with that lovely yellow yoke versus the anaemic pale yolk from the battery mass produced eggs. There is no comparison. You can purchase the real eggs here from Fortunes on any Saturday morning.
REDMOND FARMHOUSE GROCERS: We don’t need to be importing beef from far-flung places when we have such excellent produce from our very own Redmonds in Gorey. When the history of the last 30 years of Gorey is written the names of Paddy and Tommy Redmond will be writ large. They have transformed the town of Gorey by providing two hotels and built hundreds of houses, and business premises. Their enterprising transformative endeavours have now spread to the food industry with Redmond farmhouse grocers.
Their farm of 120 hectares is in Cranford. Here they grow their own potatoes and vegetables. Their beef programme rears over 1000 Angus cross heifers every spring which supplies their two hotels, their online shop, and their well-presented food stall which is open every Saturday morning in Gorey farmers mart. Their products are clearly labelled and there is a wide range of meats available suitable to all families, including steaks, Steakburgers, meatballs, rashers sausages etc. This is another great Redmond industry which is a credit to Tommy and Paddy Redmond. You can follow them on www.farmhousegrocer.ie
NUTORIOUS. Una Sinnott is 24 years of age and a UCD Food and Agribusiness Management Graduate who graduated in 2020 with a first-class honour’s degree.
In the middle of lockdown 2020 she started a healthy food business called Nutorious. The business has expanded since she attended her first Gorey Farmers Market in August 2020. Since then, Una’s sales have increased greatly across Ireland but mainly in Wexford, Wicklow, Dublin, and Kildare. She comes from a farming background and loves all things agriculture, food production and locally sourced food.
Nutorious specialises in creating healthy snack items that are nutrient dense and full of flavour. The ingredients are simple, using local oats and local, sustainably produced honey (in the items she makes which aren’t vegan). The products are not very sweet, and therefore many people love them. They are fulfilling, wholesome, gluten free and are ideal for family hiking trips or snacking on the way to work.
Nutorious is now at an exciting stage, having won two Blas na hEireann awards in 2021 and three of their products were finalists in 2022 (one winning silver). They are launching their own website soon in addition to having a Nutorious trailer on the road. Una is very grateful to their loyal Gorey Farmers Market customers.
Nutorious are also on the 2023 Supervalu Food Academy so hopefully from April onwards there will be some Nutorious snack items on shelves in stores across the Sunny Southeast. You can meet Una and purchase your Nutorious bars at Gorey Farmers Market on Saturday mornings.
SALT ROCK DAIRY: I met Jo Kinsella in the Salt Rock self-service Dairy trailer where you can refill your milk bottle with their fresh or flavoured pasteurised non homogenised milk. The Kinsella’s farm is based at the foot of Tara Hill, to find out all about it I went on a farm tour with Lorraine Dwyer of Gallivanting tours and two Californian tourists. Catherine Kinsella told a fascinating story.
The Kinsellas converted to dairy farming in 2013. They were so aware that the nature of the milk produced on farms was completely different to supermarket milk. The processing changes it from a rich flavoursome product to a tasteless characterless one. It seemed wrong that such a simple natural product as cow’s milk wasn’t available in its true form.
They researched milk vending in the UK and in October 2021 they had their pasteurising unit set up and a mobile vending unit was also ready to go. Their milk is pasteurised but non homogenised (cream rises to the top) and is sold on the farm or via the vending unit in glass bottles [grass to glass] eliminating plastic and tetra paks. The customer can also supply their own container. The vending unit is moved to different sites throughout the week which you can find on their Facebook page.
Salt Rock Dairy is a true example of a circular economy. The grass-fed dairy herd provides the milk that is pasteurised onsite and sold within a 15 kms radius of the farm minimising the food miles. It is available within hours of the cows being milked. It is heartening to meet an enterprise which is totally plastic free because they only use glass bottles for all their products. It can be a model for farmers all over the country.
At the end of the farm tour, we drank some pure milk and some strawberry and chocolate flavoured milk. It was wholesome and delicious. Full marks to Catherine. It’s great to see a return to the real deal in milk.
Memories and good business are made of this.
We love them all in lovely sustainable love Gorey.ie
Mick O Callaghan
Gorey, Wexford, Ireland
How to get to Gorey