Battle of the brown bread: Best loaf in Ireland to win €10,000

Competition to find best loaf in Ireland, and winner's recipe will be stocked in 130 Aldi stores across the country

The winning entry will earn a minimum of €10,000 profit share from Aldi for their recipe.

The winning entry will earn a minimum of €10,000 profit share from Aldi for their recipe.

 

Membership of The Irish Countrywomen’s Association is not a prerequisite of entry to the National Brown Bread Baking Competition, the winner of which will earn a minimum of €10,000. So dust off your aprons, gents, and be in with a chance of seeing your bread on sale for a minimum of six months in all 130 Aldi stores across Ireland.

The retail giant is pledging a profit share worth not less than €10,000 to the winner of the competition, which reaches its finale at the National Ploughing Championships in Tullamore in September. Second place will receive €1,000 in Aldi vouchers, with €500 for third, €300 for fourth, and €200 each for the other semi-finalists.

There are two ways to enter the competition – either by taking part in one of the heats at ICA local guilds, for which you must be a member of the association, or by delivering your loaf to one of three Aldi locations for judging: Aldi Ireland Head Office, Newbridge Road, Naas, Co Kildare (May 22nd); Aldi Regional Office, Limerick Road, Mitchelstown, Co Cork (May 22nd), and Aldi, Oranmore, Co Galway (May 29th).

Bakers must be over the age of 16, and to enter at the Aldi venues are asked to email brownbread@aldi.ie to register.

At the launch of this year’s National Brown Bread Baking Competition sponsored by Aldi are Anna May McHugh of the National Ploughing Association; Marie O’Toole, president of the ICA; chef Shane Smith; Mary Conway, 2017 winner; TV presenter Síle Seoige; Eileen Brennan of the NPA, and Joe Stapleton, chief executive of Stapleton’s Bakery. Photograph: Sasko Lazarov
At the launch of this year’s National Brown Bread Baking Competition sponsored by Aldi are Anna May McHugh of the National Ploughing Association; Marie O’Toole, president of the ICA; chef Shane Smith; Mary Conway, 2017 winner; TV presenter Síle Seoige; Eileen Brennan of the NPA, and Joe Stapleton, chief executive of Stapleton’s Bakery. Photograph: Sasko Lazarov

Three finalists will be selected from the Aldi judging sessions and five from the ICA regional finals, which will take place at An Grianán, ICA Adult Education Centre, on July 31st. These eight will then take part in a bake-off in the Aldi marquee at the Ploughing Championships on September 18th-20th.

Last year, Mary Conway’s bread rose to the challenge. The Sligo woman said: “I was up against some of the best. The competition was great fun and I met some wonderful people along the way. It was so exciting for me seeing Mary’s Soda Bread on the shelves of Aldi stores nationwide.”

Finbar McCarthy, buying director, said: “Mary’s Soda Bread has proven a hit with our customers, and we hope the winner this year will achieve the same success with their brown bread.”

For more details of the competition and how to enter, see aldi.ie/brown-bread-competition or ica.ie.

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