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Durrus Cheese

Membership Status:

Approved until 31 May 2023



About the company

Jeffa Gill began Durrus Cheese in 1979 as one of the first Irish artisanal cheesemakers. Today, the company remains a family business from its home in West Cork, operated by founder Jeffa, along with her daughter, Sarah Hennessy, and still utilises the same traditional skills and methods upon which the company has built its name. With a staff of six, Durrus Cheese has both a national and international profile and has won numerous prestigious prizes over the years. The domestic market accounts for about 60% of sales with the principal export markets being the USA and the UK.

Spotlight Target Area: Energy / Emissions
Durrus Cheese aim to create a superior handmade product fashioned from the finest
quality local milk. Its gentle cheese making practices continually aim at harnessing
what is natural – the flavours of the grass-fed milk, the natural moulds and yeasts
of its unspoilt environment – in order to create a unique product that reflects
the environment from which it derives. In the process of creating the cheeses,
the company constantly aim to add to and enhance its environment rather than
detract anything from its unspoilt nature. From this perspective, the company’s
current sustainability plan (2016-2020) aims to fully embrace this ethos and this is
demonstrated by the company’s strong performance throughout 2020, achieving
an exemplary performance across the areas of energy, waste and community
engagement. With the energy area, Durrus Cheese set a target to reduce electricity
usage per unit output by 15% over the course of its plan. The company has performed
exceptionally well in reducing electricity usage onsite, achieving a reduction in
electricity usage of over 30% since the inception of its plan in 2016. This exemplary
progress has been a result of a number of initiatives over the past five years, including;
the replacement of old compressors and equipment, motion activated light sources
and the recent installation of solar panels to further futureproof its energy needs.

Case Study 2021