Katarina Curmova, an employee at Dunnes Stores, Longford, is one of the finalists shortlisted for the Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM) Young Fishmonger Award.
Eight fishmongers, four from independent seafood specialists and four from supermarket seafood counters, will compete for the title of ‘Independent Seafood Specialist of the Year’ and ‘Supermarket Seafood Counter of the Year’.
Katarina will be up against Eimantas Zvirblis (Donnybrook Fair, Malahide), Alona Dutchak, (Dunnes Stores, Childers Road, Limerick) and Anthony Murray (Dunnes Stores, Headford Road, Galway) for the ‘Supermarket Seafood Counter of the Year’ award which will be presented at BIM’s inaugural Seafood Awards on November 17 in the Clayton Hotel, Dublin.
Katarina, who is originally from Slovakia, and living in Ireland for the last seven years, believes that the counter presentation is very important to drive sales. “A well displayed counter will attract customers as it is a well-known fact that we eat with our eyes,” she said.
Katarina joined Dunnes Stores three years ago and this was her first experience working for a large food retailer.
She thoroughly enjoys working in the Fish Department as she gets to express her artistic side through her counter displays and she also helps a lot of customers with their seafood choices.
In Dunnes Stores Longford, they carry up to 35 lines on their counter each week. The range varies depending on the day and on availability.
Supplied by Morgan's Fine Foods from Omeath, Co Louth, the store receives fresh fish daily and Katarina has regular customers who select from the counter on a weekly basis and some who would buy several days each week.
The finalists will now receive in-depth visits from the judges to assess their knowledge of seafood, their understanding of quality issues, their skills, techniques and customer service.