Northern Irish beef industry drives processing sector

A new survey published in Insider magazine revealed that 26 out of Northern Ireland’s top 100 manufacturers come from the agri-food industry. 

Although beef processors dominated the list, poultry processor Moy Park, in Co Armagh leads the list as the country’s biggest business with turnover in excess of £1.3 billion (b).

Joining Moy Park in the top 10 is meat processor Hilton Foods (UK).

The study, sponsored by R&D tax adviser Jumpstart and law firm Tughans, is reflective of the strength of the beef industry in Northern Ireland. Dunbia and Linden Foods, both beef processors based in
Dungannon, Co Tyrone, also made it into the top 50 companies.

Meanwhile, meat processors Doherty and Gray of Ballymena, Co Antrim, C&J Meats of Co Armagh and Lynn’s Country Foods of Downpatrick, Co Down, were all included in the top 100.

“The manufacturing sector continues to be a dominant force in Northern Ireland’s economy,” said Philip Cunliffe, Insider’s regional business editor for Northern Ireland.

“The turnovers of these companies demonstrate the contribution that they are making to the Northern Ireland economy and, despite some concern over productivity and export sales, confidence remains high.

“The list reflects not only the geographical range of manufacturing companies in Northern Ireland but also demonstrates the range of products and services that abound in the region.”

Also included in the agri-food list were several animal feed processors such as Belfast business W&R Barnett of Belfast, Devenish Nutrition and United Feeds.

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