Establishment of a farm shop and participation on Focus Farms Programme
Lorna Robinson is the Managing Director of Cloughbane Farm Shop, located outside Pomeroy, Co. Tyrone on a farm which houses 80 beef, 150 ewes and 15,500 free range laying hens. The enterprise began life in 2003 and emerged from the Dungannon Farmers Market, to which Lorna was instrumental in establishing. Realising that people wanted produce on a regular basis, the shop initially opened on a part time basis, but moved to full time in 2004.
Funded under Axis 1 of the Programme, Lorna participates in the Focus Farms Programme and regularly opens her doors to share practice and lessons learnt with others. The business has also been a recipient under the Processing & Marketing Grant Scheme (PMG) of Axis 1 which provides capital investment in buildings, plant and equipment for business working in agri food processing. Lorna is responsible for the personnel and marketing, whilst one of her sons, Robert, runs the farm, and her other son Richard takes on the financial planning and control of the business. They are concentrated on producing quality at reasonable prices and at present supply 40 retail outlets with plans to expand to ROI and GB. The business employs 32 staff and has won several awards and was a finalist in the UK Small Processor of the Year Awards and gained the title of the Agri-Food Business of the Year.
The enterprise has grown to employ 32 staff. It has increased the number of retail outlets supplied from 3 in 2004 to 40 at present (2012) and intend to supply outlets in ROI.