My name is Conor Sweeny and I am the chef beyond Leamhain vegan ice cream. Pronounced Lao-En, named after the Laune river which flows through Killorglin Co.Kerry. We specialise in hand crafted, vegan, gluten free and nut free ice cream.
What inspired you to join the natural health sector?
I wanted to create a product which is suitable for everyone
Where did you get the idea for your brand?
Having worked in the food industry for many years, and being vegan myself, I noticed the lack of quality vegan ice cream products. I started experimenting and Leamhain was born.
What makes your brand unique?
We are Ireland’s first and only fully vegan, gluten free and nut free ice cream sandwich brand. We have four flavours currently which include Butterscotch Blondie, Double Chocolate Brownie, Mint Stracciatella and Lemon Curd Meringue.
What are your company’s core values?
All our ingredients are ethically sourced. A great example of this is our vanilla, which is sourced straight from the farmers in Papua New Guinea. This allows us to ensure not only the highest quality produce but most importantly that everyone along the food chain is being paid fairly.
How do you support your community?
Leamhain was recently a individual athlete sponsor for The Little Blue Hero’s triathlon which took place on Valentines Day.
What has been the most rewarding part of your brands journey?
Becoming part of an amazing community of small, artisanal food producers who share the same passion and daily struggles as you. I have met so many amazing new people from this venture.
What in your opinion makes Irish brands unique?
Irish brands have an amazing way to take a serious product and put a fun spin on this. There are countless brands who have not only named their brand something witty but back it up with their online persona. We love this. Harry’s Nut Butter is a prime example. Fantastic product, name and socials!
What is your favourite product from your brand?
I personally love our Double Chocolate Brownie ice cream sandwich! Im a big chocolate lover, but I must admit, Lemon is a close second. Fresh lemon curd (which took 25 trials to get correct!) hits your palette with the perfect amount of zest and zing!
Tell us about something that has shaped your brand?
Our wonderful designer, Lydia Murray. Fresh out of NCAD, she has been by our side from day one. She is so incredibly talented and without her skills Leamhain would not be the brand it is today!
What do you hope to accomplish in the future?
We hope to launch our tubs nationwide to accompany our ice cream sandwiches!