Northern Ireland’s multi-award winning Long Meadow Cider has begun supplying customers in many parts of Britain.
The first business in Britain for the family business, which is based at Loughgall in county Armagh, is an outcome of the company’s link-up with Shortcross Gin in Crossgar, county Down to market its ciders and apple juice on its e-commerce shop.
This collaboration has led to sales in Scotland, Lancashire and Hertfordshire, according to Long Meadow director Catherine McKeever. “The platform provided by Shortcross has enabled up to gain a foothold in the marketplace in Great Britain,” says Mrs McKeever. “Britain has proved a difficult marketplace for us the crack in the past. We can now build on our customer base and promote our craft ciders there,” she adds.
Long Meadow is among Ireland’s most successful producers of original and fruit ciders as well as natural apple juice and apple cider vinegar.
The progressive company, based at the heart of Northern Ireland’s orchard county, has also won a series of Great Taste and Blas na hEireann awards for the quality and outstanding flavours of ciders processed from apples from the farm’s own orchards.
The company, which has SALSA food safety accreditation, is run by husband and wife team Patrick and Catherine McKeever with son Peter and was established in 2013.
Long Meadow has a heritage in apple growing stretching back three generations in county Armagh and has already won business from delis, independent retailers, restaurants and bars in Northern Ireland and in the Republic of Ireland.
The enterprising family grows and harvests apples from upwards of 120 acres of orchards, 30 of which are on the home farm. Native Bramley apples, which have EU PGI status, and other locally grown apples from a network of trusted growers are used.
Long Meadow ciders and juices are processed exclusively using pure pressed apple juice. The company does not use concentrates, chemicals, or added water. Small batches are produced using a unique slow fermentation process for greater flavour.
In addition, the company also runs farm tours to showcase its products and processes through Grand Circle Travel American tours.
Long Meadow is listed on the Shortcross Gin e-commerce shop following an offer from the award winning gin distillery to offer a digital platform to other craft drink business without such a market access. Long Meadow is unable to sell through its own website because of Northern Ireland’s strict licensing rules.