Immediate Release - February 2024

Image Caption: Ivan Kiersey, Freezin’ Friesian, Heather Humphreys TD, Minister for Rural and Community Development & Social Protection, Margaret Jeffares, CEO, Good Food Ireland® & Paul Heery, General Manager, The K Club 




It’s time for Ireland’s independent food and drink businesses to get the recognition they deserve with a brand new opportunity from Good Food Ireland® at this year’s Good Food Ireland® Awards 2024.


For the first time in the 18 year history of the awards, the Food Lovers Choice Award nominations will be open to any food business across the Republic and Northern Ireland (including those outside of Good Food Ireland). Local suppliers, manufacturers shops, food trucks, distilleries, pubs, restaurants and hotels are all eligible for the prestigious recognition from the highly-regarded cross-sector awards, all they need is nominations!


Margaret Jeffares, Founder and Managing Director of Good Food Ireland® says: “We’re very excited to open up this year’s Food Lovers Choice Award to all of our nation’s beloved local businesses, celebrating the people who genuinely capture the essence of Ireland’s food and drink, setting it in a cultural context to inspire travellers, international consumers and locals to seek out real, authentic Irish food and drink experiences.

“Good Food Ireland® is a unique all-island destination brand, showcasing premium culinary and agri-food offerings for almost 20 years, creating competitive advantage and attracting visitors seeking authentic, Irish food and drink experiences. We’re on the ground, we work alongside Ireland’s agri-food and tourism industry across the four corners of our island. We hear first-hand what is needed from these proud farmers, fishermen, food and drink producers and tourism hospitality providers. We use this knowledge to foster a sense of community, encouraging collaboration and knowledge-sharing and promoting innovation. By highlighting these premium cross-sector experiences, the Good Food Ireland® Awards help contribute to economic diversification, increased tourism revenue, preservation of our agricultural and culinary heritage and improved sustainability and quality of life in rural communities.”.

The Good Food Ireland® Awards 2024 were officially launched by Heather Humphreys, T.D. Minister for Rural and Community Development and will take place on Monday, November 11th at The K Club, Co Kildare.

Minister Heather Humphreys T.D. says: “As Minister for Rural and Community Development, I am delighted to have been in a position to invest in a number of rural and regeneration projects that will do so much in terms of supporting Ireland’s food industry.


“Through the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund, we are transforming an old historic site in Athy, County Kildare, into a State-of-the-Art food, drink and innovation hub. Similarly in County Roscommon, we have invested hugely in the Castlerea Food Hub to enable it to become a major driver of food innovation, enterprise and job creation in the region. And just last week saw the official opening of the first centre of excellence for the Irish food industry in the country in Athenry, County Galway. These are just some of the projects that my Department is supporting through investment under our ambitious five year rural development strategy, ‘Our Rural Future’.” 

Minister Humphreys went on to send her best wishes to the participants and adjudicators involved in the Good Food Ireland® Awards 2024.

She added: “I’m delighted to support The Good Food Ireland® Awards 2024 – a wonderful initiative that will showcase all that is good about Ireland’s food industry. Irish food producers are world leaders in their field and do us all proud on the global stage.

“I have no doubt that the adjudicators face an extremely difficult task as they choose the respective winners in each award category. I wish all the participants and organisers the very best of luck and I have no doubt these awards will be a huge success.”


Nominations for the Food Lovers Choice Awards are now open when it will be up to the general public to shout about their most beloved local food heroes. Businesses can also enter the awards directly if they believe they share the Good Food Ireland® philosophy; a commitment to prioritising Irish ingredients, sustainably supporting Ireland’s farmers, food producers and fishermen. A shortlist will be agreed by the Awards’ judging panel, and an overall winner crowned from each corner of the nation: Wild Atlantic Way, Ireland’s Ancient East, Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands, Dublin, and Northern Ireland.


Paul Heery, General Manager of The K Club and host of the upcoming awards adds: “We loved hosting last year’s return of the Good Food Ireland® Awards. It was an incredibly inspiring and uplifting day for all the team. Good Food Ireland’s emphasis on local sourcing and sustainability practices, aligns perfectly with ours and the growing demand for authentic Irish food and drink amongst discerning travellers. The Awards showcase The K Club’s commitment to these values by creating a unique dining experience that reflects the rich culinary heritage of Ireland”.

 “Celebrating with some of the bastions of our country’s burgeoning food scene also helps us to expand our reach within the local culinary community and associate The K Club with this reputation for quality and authenticity to attract discerning food lovers. We cannot wait for another crack of the whip this year, elevating last year’s business lunch to a glamourous evening event that’s going to feel like one big party including a delicious dinner fuelled by the very local producers we’ve gathered to celebrate”.


To enter the Food Lovers Choice Award 2024 please ENTER HERE.  

Only businesses approved by Good Food Ireland® are eligible for all award categories. An independent panel of industry experts will create a shortlist of finalists in each of the award categories. Following further onsite mystery inspection and assessment the winners of each award will be selected. If businesses would like to join Good Food Ireland® and be eligible for consideration across all award categories, it is by invitation and subject to approval though onsite inspection. If you wish to find out more about joining, register your interest HERE

For further updates, tickets to the event or general information visit www.goodfoodireland.com

View last year’s 2023 Awards Commemorative Brochure 


Good Food Ireland®








For further information contact: 

Good Food Ireland®

[email protected]



Notes to Editors

About Good Food Ireland®:

Since its establishment in 2006, Good Food Ireland® has played a multi-faceted role in promoting sustainable rural development by supporting local producers, encouraging sustainable practices, enhancing tourism, preserving culinary heritage, and building community engagement. These efforts have helped to contribute to the economic vitality, environmental sustainability, and cultural richness of rural Ireland. The Good Food Ireland® core emphasis of using local, fresh, seasonal Irish ingredients, encourages tourism-hospitality and retail businesses to prioritise local produce and visitors as well as ourselves here at home to seek it out. Hence supporting Irish farmers, food producers and fishermen and sustainably strengthening local economies and communities. Through its promotion of local producers, Good Food Ireland® also helps maintain traditional agricultural practices, preserving the heritage and biodiversity of Irish farming.


About the Awards:

All businesses approved by Good Food Ireland®, subject to meeting strict criteria through onsite inspection, are eligible for the awards. An independent panel of industry experts will create a shortlist of finalists in each of the award categories. Following further onsite mystery inspection and assessment the winners will be selected. The public will also have an opportunity to vote online from a shortlist of finalists, for their favourite foodie business, be it a restaurant, pub or café, a hotel or country house, a local food shop or a favourite food or drink producer, in each of the tourism regions across the country and Northern Ireland.


Full list of award categories:

Hotel Of The Year

Culinary Haven Of The Year

Restaurant Of The Year

Café Of The Year

Pub Of The Year

Shop Of The Year

Food Truck Of The Year

Sustainability Award

Producer Of The Year Awards

  • Meat Producer Of The Year
  • Fruit And Veg Producer Of The Year
  • Dairy Producer Of The Year
  • Fish & Seafood Producer Of The Year
  • Drinks Producer Of The Year
  • Sweet & Savoury Producer Of The Year
  • Overall Producer Of The Year

Food Lovers Choice Award

  • Wild Atlantic Way
  • Dublin
  • Ireland’s Ancient East
  • Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands
  • Northern Ireland, Embrace The Giant Spirit

Excellence In Food Tourism Award

Outstanding Contribution To Food Production

Outstanding Contribution To Irish Food And Drink Internationally

Recognition Of Good Food Ireland® International Ambassadors

Supreme Award Of The Year

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