Northern Irish bakery Irwin’s has boosted its business in Great Britain with a contract to supply 200 Asda stores with five products from the Rankin Selection Irish breads range.

The deal involves 750,000 additional product units annually and is valued at £400,000. Asda’s NI trading manager Michael McCallion said the contract was a clear indication that GB shoppers were developing a taste for authentic Irish breads.

According to Irwin’s national account manager Chris Moore, the Irish breads market has grown by over 200% in the past three years. Irwin’s own brands and the Rankin range account for an estimated 85% of the market.

In the two years since Asda launched in Northern Ireland, Irwin’s has grown its local business with the retailer by 15%. It now hopes to lift that further with Rankin luxury cakes and pastries, launched last month.

In foodservice, Irwin’s also won a contract to supply Irish pub chain O’Neill’s last month - a deal worth a potential £250,000 a year.