The McNeece Family have been in the business of fruit for over 50 years. Their cider was a bronze winner in 2015, also taking home a bronze for their Stameen Farm Vinegar and a Best in County award, sponsored by Louth Local Enterprise Office. You can find their cider in over 120 bars, restaurants and off licenses across the country, check if you can find them in your local here http://www.dankellyscider.com/stockists. You can find more details on Dan Kelly’s Cider and our other winners and finalists in our 2015 directory
When & why did you start your business? My father started the apple growing business in Drogheda in 1962, family members joined later!
Who is your food inspiration? Anybody who goes into business producing food!
What do you love about your job? What do I love about the job? Every day is different. Whether it’s a new challenge in the orchard or with a customer, small business like ours means you have to be very flexible.
What is your typical day? See above!
What is your favourite part of the day? Going home to see the kids, they’re still quite young so still pretty uncomplicated!
What was your best day since you started this business?
Seeing your product being sold in other countries is a nice feeling.
Where do your ingredients come from?
We grow them. If we need some other varieties then we buy from other apple growers in Ireland.
Tell us about the people you work with?
Father (Gerard) Brother (John Paul) and Sister (Fiona) A cousin of ours, Niall also works with us. Henry Mallon has been with us so long that he has seen four generations of our family work here. Marina is from the Ukraine. We have various seasonal workers as well.
What three words would you use to describe yourself/your business?
3 words… Myself: Motivated, Curious, Dogsbody. Business: Small, Flexible, Ambitious
What do you think is the key to success? As my father once told me “It won’t work if you don’t work hard at it.”
Has there ever been one single moment which has changed how you look at your business?
Single moment: Not really, more a constant accumulation of events.
Has there ever been a situation which started out as a negative but turned out for the best?
Lots! Sometimes business that you didn’t win leaves opportunity for other business.
How are you preparing for Christmas at work?
Whilst Christmas is not very busy for cider, we are busy grading and packaging apples for our customers.
What food really represents Christmas to you? Christmas Pudding and Mulled Cider of course!