Meat substitutes will help to bring home bacon for Finnebrogue Artisan


A Northern Irish food business is creating 300 jobs at a new factory producing plant-based meat substitutes.

Finnebrogue Artisan, based in Downpatrick, is investing £25 million in a state-of-the-art facility. It will focus on products aimed at “flexitarians” who are reducing their meat consumption.

The company has yet to disclose the portfolio of products that will be made, but they are expected to fall under Finnebrogue’s Naked brand, which also includes meat products such as bacon that does not use nitrites in the curing. The new factory is scheduled to open in time for Veganuary.

The jobs boost comes at a time when many of Northern Ireland’s traditional employment sectors, notably aviation, shipbuilding and hospitality, have been badly hit by the pandemic. Finnebrogue was founded in 1985 by Denis Lynn, now 63, who remains the chairman and owner. In 2009 its turnover was £3 million but revenue is projected to hit £150 million this year. At present it employs 860 people in three factories.

Andrew Nethercott, 51, managing director, said: “There is surging demand from an educated and discerning consumer base for more delicious, nutritious, sustainable and affordable food — and particularly plant-based food.”