Gearing up for Grampian food and drink ‘Oscars’

Food for Thought: The Rowett's Dr Alan Rowe and Belinda Miller, Aberdeenshire Council's head of economic development and Grampian Food Forum member, launch the awards.
Food for Thought: The Rowett's Dr Alan Rowe and Belinda Miller, Aberdeenshire Council's head of economic development and Grampian Food Forum member, launch the awards.

Entries are being accepted for the 23rd annual Grampian Food Forum Innovation Awards.

They recognise product innovation by food and drink companies based in Aberdeenshire, Aberdeen City and Moray.

Companies will go head to head at the prestigious event with several awards up for grabs, including the food and drink entrepreneur of the year, the best packaging and most successful product from the 2012 awards. The judges’ choice award is presented for an exceptional entry in the view of the judges.

Also included are categories for best new retail and best new foodservice product, which are split into two sections - for companies with up to 25 employees and for those with more than 25 employees.

An award to recognise companies who invest in skills development is being intrudced for the first time. It will go to the business that has shown the greatest achievement in raising the skills of their workforce and achieving business benefits and is sponsored by Skills Development Scotland.

The University of Aberdeen Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health, celebrating its centenary in 2013, continues to sponsor the health award.

Dr Alan Rowe, the Rowett’s food industry specialist, said “While we are very pleased to be contributing to the national, UK and EU agenda for the food industry, we have never forgotten our base here in the North-east, or the need to support smaller, local companies.

“We are hoping for a really good field of entries this year as we believe that health should play a pivotal role in innovation for the food industry.”

The winners will be announced at a presentation dinner at the Marcliffe Hotel and Spa, Pitfodels, Aberdeen, on Thursday, March 21. All companies intending to submit entries should advise the organisers by Thursday, January 31.