A local producer of Irish cucumbers has been named by Fingal County Council as the winner of its first-ever Sustainable Business Competition. Welgro Produce, based in Rush, won the accolade as part of an initiative aimed at encouraging businesses across Fingal to implement more sustainable approaches into their day-today operations.
The farm, only began operations in 2020 after taking over Thomas Collins and Jim Carthy’s three-acre cucumber farm. Since then, Welgro has been successfully delivering its locally grown produce to retailers around the country, including the likes of Dunnes Stores, Sam Dennigan and Keelings. Being one of only a very few commercial producers of cucumbers in Ireland, they are hoping to cut the import cost for vendors and allowing consumers to enjoy fresh Irish produce. The business has already shipped some 600 tonnes of cucumbers from their Rush base in 2021, which equates to a staggering 1.6 million individual cucumbers. They are expecting demand for all Irish grown produce to increase approximately 25 per cent in the coming year, mainly due to issues with international supply chains limiting the availability of imported produce.
As part of the award, the business will receive a sustainability assessment and action plan from Balbriggan based Patel Tonra Ltd. Environmental Solutions, one of Ireland's most respected and experienced environmental consultancies. They will advise Welgro on how to introduce more sustainable practices to their business and help inspire the burgeoning farm to make the most of their ambition to be a sustainable producer.
Sean Weldon, Director of Welgro Produce said: “We are absolutely delighted to win the Sustainable Business Competition. One of the reasons we entered is because we believe it is vital that we play our part in helping the current energy crisis, and it is more relevant than ever to think ahead and help reduce the use of energy to limit the number of carbon emissions in the environment. Having the insights and guidance of a sustainability expert coming in to look at how we can operate better will be a massive help.”
The Mayor of Fingal, Seána Ó Rodaigh said: “I want to congratulate Welgro Produce and wish them all the best with implementing the sustainable solution in the months ahead.”
Aoife Sheridan from the Sustainable Fingal Initiative, said: “It is great to see businesses from all over Fingal striving for positive sustainable actions for their business and for the environment.”