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Granny’s Table
Granny’s Table

Granny’s Table

Since I was young, I wanted my own business but always struggled with what I specifically wanted to do. Believe me, over the years, I’ve tried and failed at many ideas! Up until the COVID pandemic, I was busy working away in a Women’s health clinic while helping my partner Paul behind the scenes at Barefoot Farm (he’s also based in Dunhill). Finding myself unemployed forced me to rethink and re-look at my situation. And as my mum loves to say: “what’s for you, won’t pass you”!

Exterior view of Granny's Table Farm Shop
Granny’s Table Farm Shop & Deli

Family-food-connections

In the Ecopark, I noticed how many other businesses were there and looked at where we could purchase their produce, but sadly found we couldn’t anymore in Dunhill due to the beloved Harney’s shop closing (also during the pandemic) having operated for nearly 100 years! I was storing my Granny’s antique dining table which I’d been gifted many years earlier. This made me think how we’re losing the family-food-connection of sitting around ‘Granny’s table’ for healthy, freshly cooked, locally sourced meals. Then bingo! Granny’s Table Farm Shop was born! Now I’m delighted to say that Granny McCabe’s table proudly sits in my shop, as a central display feature.

Interior and central display of Granny's Table Farm Shop
Granny’s Table Interior

I source only the finest in fresh Irish local produce. I like to think that this ensures an authentic connection to our community and its food.

Business Ethos

Food provenance lies at the very heart of my business, I source only the finest in fresh Irish local produce. I like to think that this ensures an authentic connection to our community and its food. I love supporting small local suppliers too, and I am proud to have approximately seventy in-store currently! The very ethos of Granny’s Table is to focus on our local environment; buy local, keep our food miles low, use less packaging, and buy things in lesser amounts to avoid any unnecessary waste. In turn, this not only supports our environment but means we can all live a bit healthier too. Small changes are key!

The very ethos of Granny’s Table is to focus on our local environment, buy local, keep our food miles low, use less packaging, and buy things in lesser amounts to avoid any unnecessary waste.

My absolute favourite thing about running my own business is choosing the days and times I work. My current opening hours* are Tues – Fri 8.30am-4.30pm and Sat 12-5 pm *subject to change.

Oh, 100% not always sourcing the right amounts of things! Sometimes, I will over-order, and other times I will under-order. All newcomer errors I am sure, I try not to get too het-up on it but try to learn from it instead.

Selection of food products available in Granny's Table farm shop
Barefoot Farm, Frothing Ferments, Gubbeen Salami, D.P. Connolly & Sons,
& Irish Gourmet Butter

An average workday consists of many, many things. Merchandising is one I tend to do daily – which I adore doing! I love changing up the retail space and it’s often a conversation point when my customers visit. Sales, of course, chatting and meeting new people, I like doing all that too! Taking orders for gift hampers, veg boxes, and bread. Continuously sourcing fresh local produce and finding interesting new Irish-made products. Then there’s the ‘not-so-exciting stuff’ to sort through, such as accounts, record keeping, and paying bills!

Unsung Food Heros

Working alongside all the wonderful makers, creators, and producers I’ve had the pleasure to meet so far, we have so many unsung food heroes here in Ireland, we are incredibly lucky! As a sufferer of the dreaded Impostor syndrome, I should give my partner Paul a shout-out too! He really is by my side encouraging me and often gives me a much-needed push to keep going when I have a confidence wobble.

We have so many unsung food heroes here in Ireland, we are incredibly lucky!

My business is self-funded via savings and a small loan. However if I need it, I have access to Enterprise Grant Funding of €2,500 because I was unemployed before starting the business. I received business support from Waterford Area Partnership in the form of business advice and more often than anything motivation to keep going with my ideas. The Local Enterprise Office (LEO) was also good at offering business workshops and Zoom advice meetings. In general, I found that most grant funding is mainly for manufacturing or exporting products, sadly.

Yes, I do see it expanding and I have a few ideas up my sleeve, but I’ve not even mentioned them to Paul – so I’d better stay focused on what I am doing for now I reckon!

Shelf display in Granny's Table Farm Shop
Variety of products available in store

I’m an organised person by nature so I’m usually prepared and have a plan in place for orders and admin etc. I don’t know about ‘timesaving’ per se, but I do advise- to try not to fill all your time by working on your business, such as having a never-ending list of what-to-do-next in your day. Previously, I’ve been guilty of this myself and have nearly made myself sick from constantly striving and striving. We all need to practice a bit of self-care and to be kinder to ourselves.

I only opened my brick-and-mortar shop on 1st December 2023 and I don’t have a website just yet. I suppose it’s still early days but I would say yes, social media has been useful in getting the word-out.

I do encourage WhatsApp messages if customers need to reach me to order- gift hampers, veg boxes, or bread.

I tend to engage with my customers via Facebook and Instagram for updates. However, I do encourage WhatsApp messages if customers need to reach me to order- gift hampers, veg boxes, or bread. I find it useful in keeping these orders separate and there’s less of a chance of them getting lost.

If you’re excited about your idea and are going to love what you do, then go for it! The food sector is massive in Ireland, and I believe there’s enough work for us all to go around, we just need to tap into it and create a small niche for ourselves.

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