“There are pictures of me asleep on a fresh batch of relish in the kitchen.”
"There were times our school uniforms may not have been ready, but it was all part of growing up in a great business.”
He credits his parents work ethic with the success of the business. His grandmother is very supportive of his move to New York and bringing the family business to the next level of evolution.
“Ballymaloe helped revolutionize Irish food, and our aim here in America is to try change perceptions the American market has on Irish food.” He added “It has changed a lot in the past ten years but we still have a long way to go in changing the attitude”.
The main aim is to get Ballymaloe products onto the mainstream aisles in stores, and to move away from the international aisle. One of the challenges the company has overcome in the transition period was labeling issues.
The trademark Ballymaloe relish was not been recognized in American stores in the way it is in Ireland.This has led to a rebranding in the American market of Ballymaloe as a ‘gourmet ketchup’ .
The family business hope that the rebranding of the trademark product will help to get the Ballymaloe products a more recognized entity in American stores.
Sean says that Irish food should be known for what it is, sustainable and in abundance. It’s a statement Ballymaloe products want to reiterate in America.
“It’s a fact that every Irish person should be trying to get into the mindset of America. With Ballymaloe products being over here, we are trying to lead that perception of Irish food, with our good quality products.
“Relish is known in Ireland as being Ballymaloe, and we hope that the Ballymaloe trademark will really take off in New York this coming year.”
The young Cork man has fond memories of spending his summers at Ballymaloe house recalling starting a summer job in the bar at the age of fourteen and roaming the countryside with his cousins who lived down the road.
Ballymaloe has always been a strong support to the local community and Sean says “If someone came looking for a job at Ballymaloe, there was always a job found. My grandfather never believed in turning people away.”
This community and family spirit has been instilled in Sean too, who is looking forward to a busy 2014, by revolutionizing the way the American public look at Irish food.
Ballymaloe remains in the heart set of the community in Co Cork and is a much loved Irish tradition of cooking which will hopefully begin to creep in the homes and mindsets of North America as the fourth generation of an Irish dynasty begins the next journey for Ballymaloe.
Check out the Ballymaloe products here.