Looking around our little gathering I realised the importance of celebrating our successes. To reflect on how far we have come and to celebrate the path ahead. It is too easy to let celebrations slip by and to not embrace them.

It feels good to hold our head high and say “Yes, it has been a journey and we have not arrived yet, but we are doing well, and thank you to all that support us.”

To quote the Minister “We have come through the toughest recession Ireland has ever faced since the 1920s”. And we are still standing. I put this down to hard work, our great team, loyal customers and good food.

I am the first to say that I am in a little bubble. I buy the Sunday papers, but the truth is, they just get used to cover the table for the kids art projects. I turn on the radio to listen to the news and 5 minutes in I get asked “what’s murder mummy”. So off it goes.

Yet I am feeling the fear of what is happening across the pond. The news is scary. There is a lot of uncertainty for the future, with questionable leadership. However, I really feel if we stay connected, with our communities, and the people around us, we can support each other through anything.

Even though it was a wet and grey Monday morning, I felt the light and warmth of support smiling upon me from: our local enterprise board; others in local businesses; teachers and children from local schools; our elderly neighbours; friends and family.

I feel our community is what will sustain us. Through looking after ourselves and our own wellbeing, our children, our family and our neighbours. We can together create a bright sustainable future.

Food is a really interesting business to be in, as it is so personal and intimate. Food evokes emotion, it is engrained in our culture, our memories. Food is integral to our well being. I believe creating a local food economy is the essence to a sustainable future. Food, in my opinion, is the bedrock of community. You only need to go down to your local farmers’ market to feel this.

All these musings remind me of a verse we used to have up in our cafe when we first started all those years ago. It is what inspired me in setting up JOUP to begin with. It’s interesting to come back to it now and still feel inspired. Unfortunately I cant find the original author to credit them.

           Recipe for a New Economy


Maximising relationships, not maximising profits

Growth of consciousness and creativity, not brands and market share,

Democracy and decentralised ownership, not concentrated wealth.

A living return, not the highest return.

A fair price, not the lowest price.

Sharing, not hoarding,

Simplicity, not gluttony,

Life serving, not self-serving.

Partnership, not domination.

Co-operation based, not competition based.

Win-win exchange, not win-lose exploitation.

Family farms, not factory farms.

Biodiversity, not monocrops.

Cultural diversity, not monoculture.

Creativity, not conformity.

Slow food, not fast food.

Our bucks, not Starbucks.

Valuing life, over lifestyle

Being more, not having more

the key is local business


Is Mise le Meas,


Photos: Gerard McCarthy Photography


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