Finnebrogue makes history: Only NI food producer to win a grocer gold award, not once, but twice!

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Finnebrogue (Lynns Country Foods)

8th Jul 2024

Finnebrogue has been named the inaugural ‘Employer of the Year (Supplier)’ at the 2024 Grocer Gold Awards, held at the iconic Royal Albert Hall in London. This prestigious accolade, awarded in recognition of outstanding performance, innovation, and excellence, places Finnebrogue in esteemed company, having triumphed over competitors such as Arla, Glanbia, Heck, and Heul.

Hosted by Myleene Klass, the glittering ceremony celebrated 34 winners, with Sainsbury’s securing the ultimate Grocer of the Year award. Finnebrogue’s win is particularly noteworthy as it is the only food producer from Northern Ireland to receive this honour, building on its previous Grocer Gold win in 2022 for Sustainability Initiative of the Year, in partnership with Waitrose.


“This award underscores the transformative journey Finnebrogue has embarked upon over the last two years with our renewed People Strategy. It has become an industry benchmark, following accolades at the Irish News Workplace Awards for ‘Best Place to Work’, and ‘Best Wellbeing in the Workplace’ for two years in a row.”

Finnebrogue’s People Strategy is distinguished by its comprehensive career pathways and development opportunities, emphasising talent development and personal wellbeing.

Key highlights of Finnebrogue’s journey include:

  • Academic and Professional Development: Collaborations with Queen’s University Belfast and other professional bodies have enriched employee development, offering academic qualifications and professional certifications aligned with industry demands. The Executive Future Leadership Programme with Toward Ltd is nurturing Finnebrogue’s next generation of leaders.
  • Diversity in Leadership: The appointment of Bev Mitchell as Chief Commercial Officer marks a milestone in promoting diversity, being the first female executive member at Finnebrogue.
  • Returners Programme: Launched in mid-2023, this initiative supports individuals re-entering the workforce with phased returns and mentorship, ensuring a smooth transition.
  • Ability Programme: Currently in development, this initiative collaborates with charities to create employment opportunities for neurodiverse individuals and those with disabilities.
  • Employee Voice through the Finnebrogue Forum: Launched in late 2023, this forum empowers employees to influence business decisions through elected representatives.
  • Mental Health Support: Since early 2023, Finnebrogue has partnered with Insula Wellbeing to provide on-site mental health support, including confidential 1-2-1 counselling for employees on day and night shift.
  • Community Engagement: Finnebrogue’s commitment of support extends to local schools and community groups, while also fostering talent development and future workforce growth through learning and development initiatives.
  • Wellbeing Hub: The establishment of the Wellbeing and Development Hub has created a dynamic space for training, mentoring, and wellbeing activities, embodying Finnebrogue’s holistic approach to employee development.

These initiatives have culminated in Finnebrogue achieving Diversity Mark Accreditation in early 2024, making it the first UK food producer to receive such recognition.


“Winning Employer of the Year at the Grocer Gold Awards is a testament to our steadfast commitment to our people. Our focus on development, diversity, and wellbeing sets a standard for excellence in the industry. This award is not just a recognition of our past efforts, but a motivation to push further in creating innovative, supportive, and inclusive workplace practices that will drive our future success.”

For more information about Finnebrogue and its award-winning People Strategy, visit