An Bord Bia, the Irish food board, is tipped to appoint Edelman PR
to a six-figure account to promote Irish products, including beef, in
The board reviews its UK PR agency every three to five years and is
thought to have approached a number of agencies before drawing up a
shortlist of two. The Rowland Company is believed to have been the other
Michael Murphy, market relations manager for An Bord Bia in Dublin, said
the organisation was reviewing its PR arrangements but refused to give
any further comment.
The board is responsible for promoting Irish food and drink products
overseas and has a six-strong office in London.
The Irish government has charged An Bord Bia with devising a marketing
strategy to boost Irish beef’s market share. The move follows a ’Buy
British’ campaign by the Meat and Livestock Commission launched in
January which is believed to have wiped out a trade worth around pounds
3 million a week from Irish farming.
Last month An Bord Bia was said to be in discussions with UK ad agencies
about a pounds 3 million TV, poster and labelling campaign. Since 1995
Irish beef exports to Europe have fallen from 50 per cent of total
output to 36 per cent. Last year Welsh farmers protesting at cheap Irish
imports threw tonnes of frozen beefburgers destined for Tesco stores
into the sea at Holyhead.
Under EU regulations fresh beef and veal will be labelled with its
country of origin for the first time from 1 April. Labelling will
initially be voluntary, but will become compulsory in 2000.