Polish success for Northern Ireland firm

Polish sausages and cooked meats from a Northern Ireland processor are now on the deli counters of retailers in England and Scotland.

Coleraine-based Kabanos is now supplying its products to CJ Laing in Scotland and Nicco Foods of Cheshire.

The company has developed a 15-strong range of cooked meats and 28 different types of sausages, all using traditional Polish techniques.

The company already supplies independent grocers throughout Ireland and is in negotiations with Tesco to list the sausages and cooked pork.

Kabanos, which is Polish for sausages, is the brainchild of Robert McAfee and Tomaz Michaski, a Pole now resident in Northern Ireland, who brought the traditional techniques from his homeland where his family have been engaged in meat processing for generations.

The processor has further bolstered its skills by recruiting experienced sausage makers from within the Polish community in Northern Ireland.

McAfee said: "We set up the business in 2006 to meet the demand from the huge Polish community in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland for traditional cooked meats and sausages.

"It's been a tremendous success. Encouragingly, the taste and quality of our products are increasingly attracting the interest of supermarkets in Great Britain. The contracts with CJ Laing and Nicco Foods have given us an important foothold in the GB market, where there is a very substantial Polish community."

Kabanos sources pork from established Northern Ireland suppliers and creates the sausages and meats using a special curing process, which produces a unique smoked flavour.

The range currently consists of breakfast sausages (similar to Frankfurters), a number of herb and garlic infused evening meal sausages, a range of salami-style sandwich meats and tender smoked hams.