A SYRIAN refugee’s flatbread is literally flying off the shelves at a Clonakilty supermarket – such is the demand for it.
Mohamed Ghnaimi, who came to Ireland in 2015 with his family under a resettlement programme after fleeing war torn Syria in 2012.
His Alsham bakery at the Exchange Business Park on the northside of Cork city employs five people.
Despite not having a background in baking, Mohamed set up the bakery with the help of the local Syrian community in Cork and imported machinery from Egypt to make the flatbread.
His story was recently featured on television and the reaction from the public has been overwhelmingly positive
West Cork shoppers can’t seem to get enough of his tasty Syrian flatbread, which is made using Odlums Flour.
While Mohamed has been supplying halal shops and restaurants in Cork, Scally’s SuperValu in Clonakilty is the first big supermarket to stock his flatbread.
The demand was so high that they had to re-order more bread from the bakery.
‘I suppose what struck me overall about Mohamed’s story was that he was really making a go of his new life in Ireland and at Scally’s we have always supported small producers and given them a helping hand to get up and running,’ Eoghan Scally told The Southern Star.
Scally’s employs two Syrians, Ammar and Nisreen at their spice counter, The Souk, where the flatbread is on sale and they would often tell Eoghan about the issues in Syria.
Once Eoghan made contact with Mohamed, he received a delivery of 20 bags of bread the very next day from Ahmed Elsamman, who is a partner in the business and they sold out within six hours of being put on the shelves.
‘I had to order 80 more bags of bread and the response from our customers has been amazing with so many people looking for his breads,’ Mr Scally told The Southern Star.
‘Thankfully, we now have a stock to keep us going for a while,’ he added.
Eoghan said it was important to get behind Mohamed’s new business and let him know that Scally’s would support him with his bread-making enterprise.
Eoghan is also hoping that many other supermarkets will also get behind Mohamed’s bakery and give him the support and encouragement that he deserves.