Bord Bia says the Irish food and drinks industry is now on track to capitalise on its enormous potential over the next decade.

The sector is currently seen as one of the exciting sectors of the Irish economy, and has a target of raising output by a third by 2020.

The food and drink business is one of the few successful industries in Ireland at present. The likes of Jameson whiskey now exports 3 million bottles a year.

Last year food export values rose by 11% and the trend is up further this year.

But the industry is facing a tough target of increasing exports by up to 40% in the next few years.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny told industry leaders at a Bord Bia conference today that the Government will do all it can to help that growth.

While Ireland has big food companies like Goodman, Glanbia and Kerry, there are about 600 smaller companies trying to expand.