Ten years after its first packet of prepared veg hit Asda shelves, Co Down food company Mash Direct has shaken hands on a half a million pound deal with the supermarket giant.
Frustrated by low supermarket prices at the time, Martin Hamilton took the idea seriously and together they set about launching the business.
The pair diversified their farm and now grow around 1,500 acres of potatoes, carrots, cabbage, kale and broccoli in Comber and the Ards Peninsula to use for the business.
The firm is now one of the longest-standing suppliers to Asda in the region and supplies 23 of its lines to the supermarket.
The deal – which is worth over £500,000 a year – includes new product lines which reflect emerging food trends and growing demand for alternative potato dishes, such as sweet potato fries, sweet potato croquettes, potato rosti, along with carrot and parsnip fries.
With convenience and portion size also high on the agenda for today’s consumer, the contract also includes a range of single portion pots.
Brian Conway, regional buying manager for Asda NI, said: “We’ve worked closely with the team at Mash Direct over the last 10 years and have been impressed by the company’s innovative, forward thinking approach. The end result is an ever-evolving range of top quality, market-focused products which our customers know and trust.”