Glenisk MD Vincent Cleary is more at home with vats of yogurt than video tapes, but he swapped one for another recently when he took part in RTE One's "The Secret Millionaire". In the show the organic food businessman leaves Offaly behind to go undercover in Waterford. The results will be screened next Monday, October 1 at 9.35pm on RTE One.
Mr Cleary's destination for the show is a county that is feeling the full force of high unemployment and significant job losses. With many business closures in recent years in both the city and county of Waterford, he meets people struggling with the after effects of losing their livelihood. Viewers will see him meet unemployed people who are actively trying to create opportunities in their communities at a time when breaks are hard to come by. Motivated by his love of the land, he gets involved with a community garden project that is changing lives in one of the most socially disadvantaged areas of Waterford City. He also goes ont he road with the Waterford Hospice service, which has to fundraise hard every year just to provide that most basic of home care services.
A native of Offaly, Mr Cleary is best known for his role heading up organic dairy and goats milk produce company Glenisk. Glenisk itself was born in a recession, set up in 1987 by Vincent Cleary's father Jack. Since his father's death Vincent has taken the helm and has overseen Glenisk's growth to become the largest yogurt maker in Ireland, and employer to 53. Since the onset of the recession in 2008 Glenisk's market share has doubled and unit sales have increase by 40 per cent year on year.