Cork company targets bigger slice of pizza market with new Little Island factory

Cork company targets bigger slice of pizza market with new Little Island factory
Philip Dennhardt pictured here alongside Ciara McGee of Local Enterprise Office South Cork.Picture Clare Keogh.

Saturday Pizzas has taken a bigger slice of the frozen pizza market with its new factory in Little Island.

Sales of Saturday Pizzas, which was established by German food entrepreneur and Ballymaloe Cookery School trainer Philip Dennhardt in 2007, jumped 150% in the first half of this year as consumers increased their spend on groceries during Covid-19.

The company currently employs eight people with plans to grow staff numbers to 20 over the next three years.

Its pizzas are handbaked in wood-fired ovens before being flash frozen and placed on the shelves of several different SuperValu, Spar, MACE and independent supermarkets.

With the support of Cork County Council’s Local Enterprise Office, Saturday Pizzas went from producing 300 pizzas a day at its food production unit in Shangarry to producing 750 pizzas a day in Little Island and Mr Dennhardt hopes to expand the brand into overseas markets.

Set up in 2007 by German food entrepreneur and Ballymaloe Cookery School trainer, Philip Dennhardt pictured here. Picture Clare Keogh.
Set up in 2007 by German food entrepreneur and Ballymaloe Cookery School trainer, Philip Dennhardt pictured here. Picture Clare Keogh.

Mr Dennhardt said that it has been “very reassuring” to know that people believe in his business and have supported his venture which he said gives him the confidence to invest and grow.

He said he is “very excited” for the business to continue prospering and that the support of our Local Enterprise Office was “invaluable”.

Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr Mary Linehan Foley, said that the company’s success story showcased “resilience and optimism” in unprecedented times and is “a strong indicator of the economic recovery we can hope for in the locality and further afield”.

She said that the rise in supermarket sales during Covid-19 and the push to support local food and drink producers resulted in “an unexpected sales boost” for Cork County Council’s Local Enterprise clients in the food and drink sector.

Head of Enterprise with Cork County Council Local Enterprise Office South Cork, Sean O’ Sullivan, believes that Saturday Pizzas is on track to become a household name in Ireland with the new factory doubling production and said that the company is set to reach more supermarkets than ever before.

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