Prep House, the leading Northern Ireland producer of sauces, mayonnaise, dressings and marinades, has created a new product for one of Ireland’s top retail groups.

Based in Crossgar, Co Down, Prep House, a family enterprise with extensive and developing business in both Northern Ireland the Republic, was commissioned by Musgrave NI to create a new sour cream and chive dip.

The commission is the latest for Prep House’s new product development from a leading retailer, according to Prep House’s operations manager Barry Fitzpatrick.

“The creation of innovative products is among the most important services that we offer existing and potential customers in retail and foodservice,” he continues. “Another important element in our NPD approach is a commitment to source as many ingredients as possible from other food manufacturers in Northern Ireland.

“There are many superb products from smaller companies here which we are keen to support because of the provenance they guarantee. In addition, sourcing locally means lower food miles which is in line with our focus on sustainability.

“The new sour cream and chive dip is a good example of this approach. We were able to source set sour cream from Farmview Dairies, a producer of milk, cream and cheese, nearby in Castlereagh. And we linked up with the award winning Clandeboye Estate for quality natural Greek style yoghurt for the sauce. It’s a very rich flavour which has gone down well with the client,” adds Mr Fitzpatrick.

The new sour cream and chive dip is available in 170g tubs.

Prep House has enjoyed exceptional growth to 23 people, including 18 in the modern factory, from the three on the payroll in 2015

Sales have more than tripled since then. In addition, the company has invested almost £1 million in creating a state-of-the-art factory and new product kitchen. Recent customers also include Aldi, a leading German retailer in the Republic.

The family business has received support from business development agency Invest NI to help grow the business in the Republic and develop innovative products through a new development kitchen.

Awards for taste and quality for Prep House have also followed from the UK Quality Food and Drink, Great Taste Awards and the Blas na hEireann Irish National Awards. Judges have acclaimed original sauces and dressings including Irish Seaweed and Sweet and Chill.