Lion CJ Stander Ready To Roar For Northern Ireland’s Hellbent

British and Irish Lions, Ireland and Munster star forward CJ Stander has been ‘signed’ by Hellbent, the Northern Ireland producer of South African Boerewors coiled beef sausages, spicy burgers and meatballs, as the company’s first-ever Brand Ambassador.

The appointment of CJ Stander as Brand Ambassador was announced by Louis Ludik, the managing director of Belfast-based Hellbent which has just been listed by Aldi Ireland to supply 142 supermarkets across the Irish Republic. The Aldi business, the company’s first in the Republic, follows a listing in EUROSPAR stores in Northern Ireland.

“We were delighted when such a prominent and respected sportsman on the island of Ireland and the UK agreed to help us to promote our original products especially in the Republic of Ireland,” says Louis, an established and popular player for Ulster Rugby who brought his love of spicy and delicious beef products to Northern Ireland from his homeland in South Africa.

Hellbent uses prime beef from Northern Ireland farms in its coiled sausages, meatballs and burgers.

Louis formed Hellbent with Schalk van der Merwe, another South African rugby star, in 2018. Schalk also played for Ulster and is now the specialist coach and a player with Lurgan Rugby Club.

Louis continues: “CJ grew up on a sheep farm in South Africa and has vast experience of boerewors and the other meat products that we are now making in Northern Ireland and have been marketing extensively here for over the past year.In addition to the Aldi listing, an immensely exciting development for Hellbent, the Henderson Group is selling all our products in EUROSPAR across Northern Ireland.

“Both retail listings represent a massive endorsement from major food retailers in the quality of our products and their market potential. We are now keen to build on these endorsements and believe that our great friend CJ can help us to realise their tremendous potential especially in the Republic, a key target market for us outside Northern Ireland,” adds Louis.

CJ, commenting on the appointment, adds: “It’s a tremendous privilege and a great pleasure to be working with my friends Louis and Schalk in support of their superb quality and deliciously flavoured meats from our homeland in Ireland and, in time, further afield.

“They have created sausages, burgers and meatballs on a par with the very best available in South Africa in terms quality, taste and texture. It would be tremendous to be able to introduce the products in South Africa,” he adds. “In addition, I look forward to working with them on new product ideas from our homeland,” adds CJ.

CJ Stander (30) joined Munster Rugby in 2012 and has since won widespread acclaim for his outstanding performances for the province, Ireland, making his debut in 2016, and then for the British and Irish Lions the following year on a challenging tour of New Zealand. He played in all the test matches against New Zealand.

He was raised on his family’s sheep farm at George in the Western Cape and played rugby there before joining Munster. CJ was also named as Limerick’s inaugural International Ambassador in 2017 and is a hugely respected personality in the city, the province and indeed throughout Ireland.