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Aldi And IRFU Team Up To Extend Partnership To 2028

Paul O'Connell, James Ryan, Enya Breen and Kevin The Carrot

Paul O'Connell, James Ryan, Enya Breen and Kevin The Carrot

ALDI Ireland is delighted to announce they are to continue as Official Fresh Food Partner with the Irish Rugby Football Union (IRFU). The contract renewal will see ALDI continue to fuel both the men’s and women’s national teams as they take on the best sides in world rugby. It also sees the retailer extend its commitment to the ALDI Play Rugby programme, a national initiative for school children, until 2028.

ALDI Play Rugby

ALDI has partnered with the IRFU since 2016, providing substantial investment in the ALDI Play Rugby programme, a non-contact schools rugby programme which is a fun and safe way for primary school students to be introduced to playing rugby. The programme aims to encourage school children to get active, take part in regular exercise and to eat healthily.

Participation in the programme has seen an incredible increase of over 90% since ALDI began their sponsorship in 2016. 2023 saw the highest engagement of any ALDI Play Rugby programme year to date with over 126,000 students from 724 schools across Ireland taking part. As part of this the biggest ever national ALDI Play Rugby festival was held in the Aviva Stadium last May with twenty different schools taking to the same field as their sporting heroes.

Enya Breen, Colin Breslin, Greg Barrett (IRFU President), James Ryan and Paul O’Connell

In 2019, ALDI introduced the popular Rugby Stickers competition. The competition has provided over €700,000 in prize money to primary schools across the country, with Lisboduff National School, Cootehill, Co. Cavan being the latest winning school to receive a €50,000 prize to develop their sports facilities. The competition has also provided over 15,000 ALDI Play Rugby equipment sets to more than 2,000 schools nationwide, helping to develop the next generation of Irish rugby heroes in the process.

Welcoming the deal extension, Colin Breslin, Managing Director of Buying and Services at ALDI Ireland, said: “ALDI is proud to team up with the IRFU for a further four years. Since 2016, our partnership has gone from strength to strength – across both men’s and women’s teams.

ALDI Play Rugby, a key pillar of our partnership, has also enjoyed significant growth with hundreds of thousands of school children the length and breadth of Ireland having the opportunity to play rugby and learn healthy habits to last a lifetime. We look forward to working alongside the IRFU as their Official Fresh Food Partner and bringing the Play Rugby Programme to even more girls and boys over the coming years.”

Michael Collopy, Chair of the Commercial & Marketing Committee of the Irish Rugby Football Union, said: “ALDI has been a much-valued partner for the last eight years and we are delighted that they are back on board as Official Fresh Food Partner until 2028. Both brands are committed to championing a healthy lifestyle and in 2021, we even collaborated on Home, a cookbook featuring healthy, family-friendly recipes, that raised money for ALDI’s charity partner, Barnardos. ALDI enables families across Ireland to eat well for less and we are proud to have them as part of our team.”