Archive before October 2023

30 Years in Business!!

Tuesday, 26 February 2019 kim Heavin - (O'Donohues) Tags  Company News

30 Years in Business!! (1989-2019)

From then to now….

Cathal O’Donohue is a 3rd generation master baker from Co. Mayo who came to Tullamore back in 1989 with his wife Frances and their 4 children to pursue his dream of opening his own bakery.

McGlinchey’s Bakery at the top of William St. (where Buckley’s cycles is today) was for sale and having sold their house and other possessions to pursue this dream, Cathal & Frances still found themselves short by £5,000 to purchase the business. It was coming to the end of the recession in the 1980’s and the banks were closed to lending.

The late Mr. Oliver McGlinchey however, believed in Cathal’s drive, passion and ambition to succeed and offered to lend Cathal & Frances the £5000 they needed to close the deal, under the agreement that Cathal would pay it back on Credit Union terms over 2 years.

The loan was paid back in full to Mr. McGlinchey within 18 months.


Cathal says “It is safe to say, that O’Donohues bakery wouldn’t be here today without the help and good nature of the late Mr. Oliver McGlinchey who believed in us and to whom we are forever indebted to”.


1st April 1989, O’Donohues started to manufacture and supply O’Donohues Bread with a total of 3 staff: Cathal, his wife Frances and 1 other baker. “Use Your Loaf & Keep the Dough in Town”, soon became a popular slogan within the town and surrounding areas that many associated with O’Donohues bread and today, the bakery is located in a 20,000 sq. Ft manufacturing facility in Kilcruttin Centre and employs a hardworking dedicated team of 30 staff.

O’Donohue’s supply Dunnes, Tesco, Supervalu and independent retailers in the Midlands with their premium hand-crafted Yeast and Soda breads that have been winning Great Taste Awards since 2008. The product range includes traditional favourites like the Sliced Pan, Batch loaves and Buttermilk Soda breads.


“There are no short cuts taken when it comes to producing our products. Using real, natural ingredients and allowing the right amount of “Time” for the dough to ferment is the key to achieving each of our products full flavour” – Cathal O’Donohue, Managing Director

O’Donohue’s Bakery are committed to the continuous development of new products and finding new ways to diversify with the ever-changing consumer trends and lifestyles. This attitude to change, lead to the creation of The Penny Loaf in October 2013 which helped the business withstand and pull through the most recent and challenging recession. Created for the Foodservice market, today the Penny Loaves are used by many chefs across the Island of Ireland and have even reached new markets including the UK and France.


Very much the family affair, Cathal, Frances and daughter Louise continue to work in the business. It was Cathal’s Grandfather who established the first O’Donohue’s Bakery back in 1879 in Charlestown Co. Mayo, so it goes without saying, there are generations of expertise in every loaf they make!

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National Bread Week 13th - 18th Oct

Friday, 19 September 2014 Jonathan O Donohue Tags  Company News

Love Your Loaf this National Bread Week (13th – 18th October 2014) 

The first week ever devoted to Irish Bread.

National Bread Week, organised by the Flour, Confectioners and Bakers Association (FCBA), will be a consumer facing campaign that will encourage everyone to celebrate all that is great about Irish bread, using the call to actions "Love your Loaf". 

O'Donohues Bakery are extremely proud of Irelands delicious bread heritage.  There are so many ways to buy and enjoy bread as part of a healthy balanced diet – top it, toast it, wrap it, butter it…the choice is yours, but with bread you need never be bored.  Events will be taking place for National Bread Week in bakeries and stores across Ireland from October 13th to 18th.  The week offers the perfect opportunity to learn more about bread – its value, versatility and the fantastic variety on offer every day.

O'Donohues will be taking this opportunity to raise the awareness of the goodness of Irish bread by hosting a number of trips to the bakery where people will get the chance to meet the men and women responsible for Ireland's bread.  We will also be holding the following competitions:

  • First Communion Colouring Competition
  • Make & Bake Competition (open to all Secondary school Home Economics students) - click here to find out how you could win a Samsung Galaxy Tab 4!


So lets celebrate all that is great about Irish bread with National Bread Week (13th – 18th October 2014) and lets ‘Love Your Loaf’


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The Penny Loaves

Monday, 20 January 2014 Jonathan O Donohue Tags  Company News

So the Penny Loaves are finally here! Our Blast Freezer and Holding Freezer have been installed, We've purchased a brand new 6-lane  depositor which allows us to produce up to a massive 46000 penny loaves per day! Our sales department are currently out on the road trying to get some orders for these little beauties.

The Penny Loaves represent a real departure from the business model that we have employed at O'Donohues Bakery over the last 25 years. The recession has certainly had an effect on our sales just like almost every other business in the country. It's becoming increasingly difficult to compete with consumers moving to large discount supermarket chains and it has become clear that if we don't try something new then like many other companies today we might not make it.

Our passion here at O'Donohues is quality. What we do, we do well. Our standards are extremely high, our products are premium and while we are definitely pitched at the more expensive end of the market, we make no apologies for that. However, our challenge is trying to get our quality produce to the end user while trying to drive down the costs. Frozen Bread may be the solution to this problem.

There's a perception in the public domain that frozen produce is somehow inferior to fresh produce. Take our Penny Loaves for example. Within 2 hours of them being baked they are 'blast frozen' to -18C before being transferred to a holding freezer where this temperature is maintained until they are ready for despatch. When the products are defrosted they are almost exactly the same as they were before they were frozen. In fact they are arguably 'fresher' than the bread you buy from the shelf in your supermarket. And here's why: Ordinarily bread is baked today, it is sliced and wrapped this evening/tonight and is delivered to the shops tomorrow morning, which essentially means it almost a day old by the time it gets to your kitchen table.

I think frozen produce gets a bad name because people associate the freezer with dodgy ready-made meals or other processed foods. Our products are premium. The fact they might be frozen is incidental, they're still premium! 

Now I'm not saying that O'Donohues Bakery is suddenly going to start making frozen bread exclusively, we have a very loyal customer base whom we have every intention of continuing to supply the way we always have. The purpose of this blog entry is simply to challenge some old beliefs. At the end of the day if we can supply you with product that is high quality, for a lower price and minimise waste then everybody wins.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for more updates.

For Now,

Keep the dough in Town,


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Awards Awards...

Monday, 9 September 2013 Jonathan O Donohue Tags  Company News


and Q-Mark Success!

The 2013 Great Taste results are now out and O’Donohues Bakery is a winner again!

We are celebrating the news that 5 of our products have wowed judges in the Great Taste Awards 2013 by being awarded a gold star each in the world’s largest and most rigorous food awards scheme involving over 400 judges and thousands of hours of blind tasting.

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Let's ALL 'Keep the Dough in Town'

Thursday, 1 August 2013 Jonathan O Donohue Tags  Company News

O’Donohues Bakery is about to embark on a new journey for their organisation with the launch of a new UNIQUE product to the foodservice industry. The products are called ‘Penny Loaves’ and they are fully baked, soda based breads that are shaped like a mini loaf and frozen. Essentially they are an alternative/replacement to the traditional soup roll.

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New Website launch!

Monday, 27 May 2013 Jonathan O Donohue Tags  Company News

Welcome to our new website!

We've been really busy over the last 6 months re branding our packaging and getting our website up and running. At O'Donohues we're really passionate about giving the customer what they want so if our product lines aren't quite meeting your needs then let us know and we may be able to do something about it.

Whether it's the old stalwart the 'Sliced Pan' you're after, something traditional like some brown soda bread or something new age and for the health conscious like our Spelt and Honey loaf we're confident we've got something to suit your needs here at O'Donohues Bakery.

Let us know what you think by clicking on the 'contact us' page.

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