Parents Timmy and Angela Faughnan did not have to think twice about handing over their Leitrim-based family business Dromod Boxty to daughters Áine and Sheena.
The big move came close to two years ago, when Timmy felt it was time to hang up his boots, following a powerful twenty-fifty years of successful business.
At the time, twenty-nine-year old daughter Áine, travelled back to Irish soil from New Zealand to ambitiously continue the tradition.
‘Our family operated a grocery store in the 1980’s, so we’re no strangers to business. It was always expected that I was going to take over the enterprise. It was just a matter of when. The golden opportunity came and I took the phone call to come home.’ Áine explained to That’s Farming.
Established in 1990 and based in Dromod, Co. Leitrim, the idea of a century-old traditional Boxty recipe makes the Faughnan’s enterprise a cut above the rest.
‘The recipe goes back to the time of my Granny. My Father decided to focus on making the recipe on a larger scale. To start, it all took place at home, in the heart of our kitchen.’ Áine continued.
Ms. Faughnan embraced her entrepreneurial blood and began to make her mark in the industry, continuing the exceptional work of her parents.
Since becoming the head woman of the business, which operates in Dromod, Áine has implemented numerous changes, including the re-branding of the product in March 2016. This change arose at the time same as another major milestone in the business’s lifetime, being the participation in the SuperValu Food Academy.
‘Sheena and I felt that once we took over that we needed to give our packaging a new look. Sales increased dramatically as a result.’ Áine said.
An Expanding Product Range
In order to respond to the national demand for their products, a bakery has been developed on the grounds of Dromod. This has allowed for the larger-scaled quality product production.
Boxty, marketed as a high-energy yield, yet low in sugar and fat product being the initial speciality, remains the best-selling product of the family business.
Diversity within the food sector remains a core part of their objectives.
Pancakes follow close hot on the heels of the best-seller and now have become a family favourite of many, with sales pushing outside of the Leitrim borders.
With 107 calories, the thick, flurry and full of natural flavour mix, has been a Dromod Boxty special for over two solid decades.
Health Bread, Millers Much and Ginger Cake have been placed on the shelves of large-scaled shops.
Expanding into several cafés in the Leitrim area has become yet another achievement for Áine since the business-takeover.
A total of seven products are on the market at the moment, when no plans to draw a line here, just yet.
A new product now in its infancy is currently in the pipeline, but Áine is keeping this one under wraps, for at least six months.
Running the Show
Áine admits that reaping the benefits of self-employment is the driving force behind her role.
Wearing many hats in the disciplines of Marketing, Management and Production are among the areas of her expertise.
Social Media Management degree graduate Sheena is responsible for the social media presence of the business.
‘I take pride in the fact that it is a family business. I can employ many people in the locality, put Dromod on the map and along with producing quality products.’ Áine explained.
The business now employs a total of nine people, six on a full-time basis and has three part-time employees.
Timmy and Angela are not completely away in the shadows and are still on-hand to share their knowledge and experience with the daughter-duo.
Now in ten countries around the island, Dromod Boxty has taken entrepreneurship to a whole new level, boasting stockist the other side of the Irish island in Ireland’s capital.
'We're in Mayo, Galway, Longford, Cavan, Sligo and Westmeath to name but a few.' Áine said.
Now in its second generation, Áine hopes to keep the ball rolling and let their success run into many more future generations.