Artisan confectionary producer Skelligs Chocolates from Ballinskelligs, Co Kerry has won the Overall Product of the Year at the SHOP trade expo for its chocolate shoe product.

Established in 1996, Skelligs was awarded €2,000 of retail support intelligence from awards sponsor, Shelfspace, alongside the prestige of being named as the number one product at SHOP.

“For the past year, we have worked tirelessly to ensure our chocolate shoes look exquisite whilst tasting great,” said Colm Healy, proprietor of Skelligs Chocolates. 

“We hope that this national recognition will continue to open doors with new customers and will expand our newly rebranded range with existing customers.”

A small family-run business, Skelligs opened a new 6,000 sq ft state-of-the-art chocolate production facility last year where people can watch the products being made with a new cafe added on.

Healy, who comes originally from an IT background, bought Skelligs Chocolates for around €250,000 in 2004 as a going concern and spent six years developing new products and building up the business.

With a continual focus on product innovation, Skelligs have successfully developed sea salt, and gin tonic flavoured chocolate bars in the past, and this year the team was working on a chocolate containing seaweed.

SHOP, a dedicated trade show for the retail, food, drink and hospitality sectors, is running until 27 September and has already had thousands of visitors since it opened yesterday in the RDS in Dublin.