Established in 2009, Donegal Rapeseed Oil uses seed grown on small farms throughout Donegal, Derry and Tyrone. The seed is cold pressed, filtered, bottled and labelled at a pressing facility near Castlederg, Co. Tyrone – making it a truly local product. Donegal Rapeseed Oil is cementing its success and continuing to develop the business with a total re-brand.
With sales of Donegal Rapeseed Oil increasing substantially year by year, the company’s Managing Director, Austin Duignan decided that now was the time to take stock and develop a clear brand and image that merits the award winning high quality product, which would sell not only in Ireland, but looking to the future, further afield.
“We have had to work hard over the past number of years to educate the consumer on the incredible benefits of using local Rapeseed Oil over the more established options such as imported Olive Oil” said Austin. “We are now getting to the stage where many people, having realised the fantastic health benefits, and sampled the great taste are making the switch.”
“As with any product however, there are variants in both quality and taste within the Rapeseed Oil market itself, and as Donegal Rapeseed Oil is an award winning premium quality oil with a unique taste as a result of the quality of the Donegal soil, we want to ensure that our product visual and branding is distinctive and reflects the quality and flavour of the product, as well as the beautiful part of the country from which it takes its name” Austin added. “We have accumulated a loyal following, and a reputation for excellence and amazing taste, therefore we want to make it as easy as possible for our current and future customers to find us on the shop shelf”.
Donegal Rapeseed Oil has the lowest saturated fat content of any other oil on the market. It only has 6% saturated fat content compared to most olive oils at 14% and sunflower oil at 10%. It is high in omega 3, 6, and 9, all believed to have a profoundly positive effect on heart health, reduction of strokes, and rheumatoid arthritis. The oil is also a rich source of vitamin E, and can help lower cholesterol.
Indeed the product has gained a reputation as being the oil of choice with an ever growing number of consumers and it is now stored in over 300 stores nationwide including Supervalu and local grocers. It has also gained the seal of approval from some of Ireland’s most revered chefs including award winning celebrity chef Neven Maguire who has used the product for a number of years;
“I don’t cook with anything else, it has a fantastic nutty taste and it’s great for salads and marinades,” Neven said recently “When you cook with it, it doesn’t smoke like vegetable or other oils, it gives a great even heat. It really is a fantastic local product, and I’d highly recommend it to everyone.”
The company have also recently extended their product line with flavoured Donegal Rapeseed Oil in Lemon, Chilli and Garlic and the premium gold range oils in Curry, Fennel and Porcini Mushroom flavours.
With the new look Donegal Rapeseed Oil on the shelves, Austin Duignan, his team and his marketing manager Thomas Hughes, have ambitions to expand and extend the customer base and grow the business further. “Until recently our focus has been solely concentrated on the Irish market, north and south – there is still room for continued growth in the home market, as more and more people are finding out about Rapeseed Oil, however, we have started to look at the prospect of entering new markets.”
They have attended food expos in the UK, are taking part in programmes working towards launching the product in Germany market and they have received great interest from the US and Canada.
The future prospects for this small food company from the northwest of Ireland is exciting and the new branding will ensure Donegal Rapeseed Oil will shine out from any store or supermarket shelf – wherever it may be in the world.