D.J Kelleher, Owner of Riverview Eggs Ltd. addressed the International Egg Conference in Mexico recently. He was invited to participate by The Ambassador of Mexico to Ireland, Carlos Garcia de Alba and the Dean of the University of Guadalajara – Tepatitlan de Morelos Campus – Dr. Leticia Leal Moya. His presentation outlined the challenges faced by Riverview Eggs and the Irish egg industry in its efforts to meet the market demands and EU regulations. With the help of Bord Bia and the Irish Egg Association, D.J was able to develop a presentation that would be meaningful to a Central and South American audience.
In advance of the conference, D.J first flew to Guadalajara in western Mexico and then travelled down to Tepatitlan where the event was held. Here D.J spent two days meeting with various lecturers across food and business faculties and the various associated research teams where he learned of the difficulties and challenges faced by the egg and agri-food sector industries in Mexico. Speaking following his visit, DJ said, “Mexico has a population of over 122 million people and a registered hen laying population of over 150 million, compared to over 3 million in Ireland. Unlike Ireland where the Bord Bia Quality Assurance Schemes and Origin Green exist, Mexico has very little by way of independently approved systems and methods of production, across all of their agri-food sectors.” There were lots of questions relating to the sector, how Ireland has addressed the very same challenges, and how the industry continually grows and meets the requirements of its ever changing markets and consumers to which D.J answered these questions based on his experience.
The International Egg Conference was attended by over 500 people, including industry representatives and related faculty lecturers and students of the University, and D.J. was one of the keynote speakers. He addressed about the challenges Riverview Eggs, Ireland and indeed Europe faced over the past 20 years and highlighted how the formation of the Egg Quality Assurance Scheme (EQAS) and Bord Bia were essential to the creation of the high industry standards. D.J also outlined all of the factors associated with the EQAS and what the egg industry had to do to meet this new and united method of producing the safest possible egg for the consumer. He then went on to speak about Bord Bia’s unique Origin Green, a sustainability development programme for the Irish food and drink industry and he outlined the criteria for membership and associated benefits for the food producer, the local community and Ireland as the food island of Europe. DJ noted, “The conference delegates were delighted to receive the information in the presentation, in the hope that they might be able to address the issues and challenges of their own. Plenty of questions were asked at the end of the presentation, which I answered to the best of his knowledge!”
In conclusion, DJ added, “I would like to thank the Mexican Embassy and the Mexican Ambassador to Ireland, Carlos Garcia de Alba and the University of Guadalajara for extending me the invitation, and hopefully assisting them in the development of their agri-food sector. I was delighted to offer help where I could and it was a great opportunity to share our industry’s progressive story.” It was especially poignant for D.J Kelleher, the Kelleher Family and all at Riverview Eggs, as the Kelleher family celebrate their 50th Anniversary, in the egg business, in 2016.