Northern Ireland-based Irwin’s has secured a contract with Waitrose to supply its new Rankin Selection Cinnamon and Raisin Toasty Loaf, a twist on traditional Irish fruit bread, in 150 stores.

The new fruit loaf was developed specifically for toasting and, according to the company, “in response to consumer demand for a more indulgent bread in the morning goods category”.

Waitrose currently stocks the seven-strong Rankin Selection range in its stores, which equates to more than two million packs annually. 

Stefan Szymura, senior national account manager for Irwin’s, said: “We are delighted to secure this new business with Waitrose for the Rankin Selection brand. The brand continues to be the best-selling traditional Irish bread range in GB, with sales growing by 6% year on year.”

In addition to the Cinnamon and Raisin Toasty Loaf (£1.20) the Rankin Selection range includes Irish Buttermilk Sliced Sodas (£1.00), Brown Soda Bread (£1.20), Stoneground Wheaten (£1.44), Potato Slims (£1.20), Barmbrack (£1.80) and Rankin Fruit Loaf (£1.50). The range is available in major retailers across GB, including Tesco, Asda, Morrisons, Waitrose and Sainsbury’s.

Last month Irwin’s added two new flavours to its Howell’s cake range.