Waterford’s Chia bia wins ‘Best Exporter’ at National Enterprise Awards

Waterford’s Chia bia wins ‘Best Exporter’ at National Enterprise Awards

Ray Owens and Barrie Rogers, founders of Chia bia, were presented with their award as ‘Best Exporter’ by Minister of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton at the National Enterprise Awards Ceremony in Dublin Castle on Thursday, November 7th.

Waterford-based health food company Chia bia, Ireland’s largest supplier of chia seeds, has become the first business in Waterford to take home a top accolade at the prestigious National Enterprise Awards 2013 in 21 years. The company which employs a team of six from its Tramore, Co. Waterford base, was recognised for its achievements within the Irish Export Market.

From launching in 100 health stores in February 2010, Chia bia now supplies to almost 1,250 outlets across the UK and Ireland. The company recently signed a new distribution deal which will see its range of products listed in Tesco’s 142 stores across Ireland. In the UK, Chia bia is available from Selfridges, Holland & Barrett and is listed with all major health distributors and an increasing number of independent health food stores. Chia bia supplies directly to customers in the Middle East and also to Sobeys – a major distributor throughout Canada.

“The UK market now accounts for almost half our business and 15 per cent of our sales are from the Middle East and Eastern European markets. We are rapidly progressing our market share in Canada and have expansion plans for Northern European markets also.” said Ray Owens, co-founder of Chia bia with Barrie Rogers.

“We are so proud to receive this award from the National Enterprise Awards. It is a real testament to the dedication and hard work of our team”

Anike Tyrell, CEO of the Waterford County Enterprise Board said “Chia Bia is clearly leading the field when it comes to growing export markets for health-related products. By 2016, the company will be trading in at least eight international markets. By looking beyond the domestic opportunities, Barrie Rogers, Ray Owens and their hard-working team are helping to lead our county’s economic recovery, through export growth”

Chia bia was established by Ray Owens and Barrie Rogers in 2009 and now employs six people from its base in Tramore, Co Waterford. The National Enterprise Awards celebrate the outstanding achievements of the 30,000 micro-enterprises who received support from