Tom Sinnott’s Aunt Ellen O’Leary started Wexford Home Preserves in 1988 in Our Lady’s Island, Co. Wexford. She built up a great reputation locally for the quality of her jams, marmalades and other preserves.
When Ellen decided to move on to other things, Tom and his wife Laura took the reins and began running this small family business making artisan sweet and savoury preserves and conserves by hand using traditional recipes with the open pot boiling method.
They had a passion for really good, locally made food using local ingredients and could see a need for it in Co. Wexford and much further afield.
Tom and Laura have stuck to their guns when it comes to quality, the use of local suppliers and the making of everything by hand – and it has really made a difference.
Wexford Home Preserves has won several awards including Wexford business of the year, Great Taste Awards and the Irish Quality Food Awards.
The company now supplies over 350 shops nationwide and is making award winning Select products for Dunnes Stores.
Tom and Laura, besides employing themselves, have created 12 jobs and have contributed a lot to the local economy, choosing to deal with local suppliers whenever they can.
The love of local is evident in the new packaging of their gourmet range, Ellen's Choice. Laura's sister, an accomplished artist, was commissioned to paint 4 illustrations for use on the caps of these jars. Each illustration is of a place of local interest or beauty – Dunbrody Abbey, Hook Lighthouse, the Irish National Heritage Park and the Kennedy Trail.
Laura and Tom feel that focusing on their locality is actually what customers want and they are happy to invest in that. They are building a sustainable business that may not be the biggest in the country but that will be still going strong in all the right ways when their children, Lila and Robbie are of an age when they can decide if they want to join their Mammy and Daddy.