• Cyril McAree

Enjoy The Burren in a Basket this Spring

Members of the Burren Food Trail have launched the “Burren Basket” in direct response to the adverse effect on product sales and food tourism in the region as a result of the global Covid-19 pandemic. The initiative is a collaboration featuring some of the area’s best known award winning artisan food producers, such as the Burren Smokehouse and St Tola Irish Goat Cheese, with the support of the Burren Ecotourism Network. “Following the sudden onslaught of travel restrictions, we started receiving several enquiries from regular customers about the availability of our cheese online,” explained Siobhán Ní Ghairbhith from St Tola Irish Goat Cheese. “Then conversations started between the members of our food network, most of whom had to unfortunately close, but had a stock of product to sell. The online Burren Basket seemed the ideal, and only, solution.” The Burren Food Trail is comprised of 30 businesses from the Burren Ecotourism Network which boasts almost 65 members. The membership includes food producers, restaurants, cafes, visitor attractions as well as farmers’ markets. Like many businesses in the current climate, the region has been forced to innovate in light of the decline in sales and the non-existent tourism industry.

“Many of the Burren Food Trail members had market ready product as the season was starting just before the Covid 19 crisis,” highlighted Burren Ecotourism Network CEO, Jarlath O Dwyer. “With strong demand for products from the locality thanks to long term loyal customers, we decided to take the business on-line with the Burren Basket. Hopefully, when the current situation has passed, our valued supporters will be in a position to visit the area and continue to spread the word about the Burren Food Trail.”

The Burren Smokehouse is an experienced on line trader with expert knowledge of the logistics involved in the delivery of chilled goods and has built up an extensive database of Irish and international customers since starting operations over 30 years ago. Owner Birgitta Hedin Curtin has seen a gradual increase in online orders in recent weeks, many of which have been destined as gifts for loved ones as well as for personal consumption. “The Burren region is recognized as a distinguished food destination, synonymous with outstanding produce and engaging hosts offering memorable food and dining experiences,” said Birgitta. “The Burren Food Trail contributes to sustaining a local tourism economy that sees visitors drawn to the area, not only by the appeal of its culture, people and landscapes, but also by the food based experiences that enhanced the pleasure of their stay. We are confident that the destination will recover after this challenging time, and in the meantime, we will endeavour to promote the Burren brand through initiatives like the Burren Basket.” As well as products from St Tola Irish Goat Cheese and the Burren Smokehouse, the Burren Basket includes gouda from Aillwee Cave, black and white pudding from Market House and beetroot chutney from Burren Fine Wine & Food. It is delivered direct to the doorstep in Ireland and to select countries in Europe, providing a contactless transaction which is increasingly important in this period of social-distancing, self-isolation and cocooning. The Burren Basket is available in 2 sizes and makes an ideal gift to surprise a much missed family member or friend who is a lover of award winning artisan food or a well deserved personal treat. To order, visit www.burrensmokehouse.com


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