Last night (Thursday 19th September) over 500 guests gathered to celebrate the food and drink manufacturing industry’s contribution to the UK at The Food and Drink Federation (FDF) Awards 2019 at the Royal Lancaster, London. The event was hosted by celebrity restaurant critic and food journalist for The Observer, Jay Rayner. Headline Partner, Santander, sponsored the event.
The evening also recognised the new category of ‘Registered Nutritionist/Dietitian of the Year’, helping celebrate the many talented individuals who support industry in improving the health of the nation and who are crucial in the formulation of innovative new product development. The Awards also payed special recognition to John Lea, Chairman of Morning Foods and Oakes Millers, for his outstanding contribution to the industry.
The FDF Awards 2019 winners are as follows:
Special Recognition – John Lea, Morning Foods and Oakes Millers:
John Lea is the Chairman of Morning Foods and Oakes Millers, companies that represent the largest independent milling, food and feed production companies in the UK. Through technological advancement, product innovation, and continuous reinvestment, John has evolved the Group to be at the forefront of these disciplines.
Apprentice of the Year – Kyle Constable, OAL:
Kyle Constable, apprentice at OAL, plays a key role in helping global food manufacturers adopt OAL’s patented Steam Infusion technology. His commitment, work ethic, and commercial awareness have been instrumental in his success.
Brand Launch of the Year – Britvic Plc (sponsored by Ipsos MORI):
Britvic Plc have worked on relaunching and revitalizing Robinsons Fruit Creations and Robinsons Fruit Cordials, restoring the brand and ensuring growth. In just 12 months, Robinsons was able to offer a new and interesting proposition and drive incremental growth through market penetration and trade up.
Campaign of the Year – Fare Share:
Fare Share’s Feed People First campaign called on Government to introduce financial incentives to food businesses to make the cost of charitable food retribution equal to that of sending food, which is still good to eat, to waste. This helps ensure that the annual 270,000 tonnes of surplus food goes to those in the UK who are struggling to afford to eat.
Community Partner – Bags of Taste (sponsored by University of Lincoln):
Bags of Taste’s Bags of Taste, Combatting Food Poverty is a completely new and innovative way to help motivate otherwise disinterested participants to change their habits in favour of regularly cooking good and tasty food at home.They help people to change their diet and food preparation habits long term and for as little as £1 a portion.
Diet & Health (Joint Winners) – Kellogg’s:
Kellogg’s significantly reduced the amount of sugar found in Kellogg’s Coco Pops. A cross-functional team achieved this by utilising cocoa and flavourcreation technology to deliver the desired flavour, texture, and appearance with a lower sugar level, without using artificial sweeteners.
Diet & Health (Joint Winners) – Kerry Taste & Nutrition:
Kerry Taste & Nutrition’s work in Optimising in Beverage Menus in Foodservice has helped address the consumer demand for health and wellness without compromising on taste. It has also allowed them to create natural solutions to nutritionally optimise foods.
Education Initiative – PepsiCo International:
PepsiCo International’s The PepsiCo Beaumont Park STEM Initiative or ‘The Curiosity Club’ was created to increase STEM engagement in young people. The initiative introduced six interactive workshops linking STEM to the food industry, for ambassadors to use and deliver in local schools.
Environmental Leadership – Raynor Foods Ltd (sponsored by Food Matters Summit):
This year Raynor Foods Ltd commissioned and up-scaled Rosemary Gardens, their on-site hydroponic, vertical, self-contained farm that is comprised of multiple growing units. These units utilise third generation LED grow-light technology, have in-built UV water filtration systems and fully programmable lighting and irrigation systems.
Exporter of the Year – Millennium Group (sponsored by Santander):
Millennium Group, working very closely with the Department of International Trade (DIT) and China Britain Business Council, have become the biggest UK supplier by volume of FMCG to cross-border retailers in China, with over 1000 containers shipped in 2018. This has been achieved through finding right partners and building strong relationships and respecting the trading terms and styles of large Chinese companies.
Food and Drink Engineer of the Year – Alexandra Agg, Mondelēz International (sponsored by Sheffield Hallam University):
Alexandra Agg, Senior Process Engineer at Mondelēz International, has successfully reviewed and improved process control and training of operators on how to run lines in the optimum way. Her study and methodology has become the benchmark for the whole factory, through her commitment in engaging and involving every operator and technician on the line and taking on board their ideas for improvement.
Food and Drink Scientist of the Year – David Clark, KP Snacks (sponsored by IFST):
David Clark, Development Manager at KP Snacks, has played a key role in new product and process development work. He has become a specialist in a number of key food science issues that have become increasingly important to the business and the wider snacks industry.
HR Initiative – KP Snacks:
KP Snacks have implemented a company-wide mental health strategy in-line with Making mental health a priority at KP Snacks. Mental wellbeing is now placed on an equal footing with physical wellbeing, health and safety. KP trains colleagues to become ‘Mental Health First Aiders’ (MHFA’s) who also help to boost wider awareness to ensure better access to mental health support throughout KP Snacks.
Innovation – Company Shop Group (sponsored by Santander):
In the last year, Company Shop Group have made significant strides in helping the industry unlock the full potential in surplus – commercially, socially, and environmentally. In 2018, they handled around 83,260 different products. With new retailers and brand owners on board, they demonstrate a great level of flexibility and agility getting stock to people and ensuring products are used for their original purpose.
Rising Star – Jessica Kelly, Premier Food (sponsored by PepsiCo UK):
Joining originally on the Premier Food’s commercial graduate programme, Jessica Kelly has quickly progressed within the company. Her positive drive has seen her deliver exceptional results, shown in her initiatives raising over £3000 for our charity partners. Jess clearly demonstrates the skills and potential required to excel in the industry.
Emerging Business – The Meatless Farm Co. (sponsored by RSSL):
The Meatless Farm Co. invests heavily in product development of plant-based products. Their mission is to make plant-based eating simple, allowing families and individuals to swap out meat a couple of days a week.
Registered Nutritionist/Dietitian of the Year – Meg Longworth, Chartwell, Compass UK&I (New for 2019):
Meg Longworth, Head of Nutrition and Public Health, Chartwells, Compass UK&I, has made a huge contribution to the health of young people. She has driven innovative programmes such as Nudge Nudge, sat on All Parliamentary Groups, made keynote speeches as well as writing a topical column in Educatering Magazine.
Santander Special Recognition Award – Ramsden International:
Ramsden International is the UK’s leading wholesale exporter of British grocery brands, exporting favourites such as PG Tips and Cadbury’s chocolate to 100+ countries worldwide. Selling over 23,000 products, their approach of entrepreneurship, innovation and community has brought global success, injecting more than £465m into the British economy since 1995.
A silent auction at the event was held for industry benevolent charity GroceryAid. Prizes were generously donated by Redtooth Memorabilia.
Ian Wright CBE, Chief Executive, Food and Drink Federation, said: “Many congratulations to each of the winners at tonight’s FDF Awards. Thanks to our diverse and vibrant industry, each of the applicants in every category all had something distinct to offer. Every entrant should be proud of their contribution to UK food and drink.
“We are also most grateful to Santander, our headline partner, and to all of those kind enough to sponsor our Awards. Lastly, thanks to all those who donated to the silent auction in support of GroceryAid. Well done to the bidders who take the prizes home.
“Tonight’s FDF Awards prove that despite the uncertainty we have been facing in these difficult times, the UK food and drink industry is increasingly versatile and dynamic and in the best possible shape to face the challenges to come.”
Andrew Williams, Head of Food & Drink Sector, Santander UK, said: “At a time when UK food and drink manufacturers have a lot to grapple with, these awards shine a light on the incredible talent and innovation we have in the industry. Food and drink manufacturing is in Britain’s DNA and is why the UK remains a global leader in exporting these goods. We’re thrilled to support the awards again and will continue to support this industry, which is so integral to our economy.”
The 2020 FDF Awards will launch in November 2019. For more information on the FDF Awards visit: www.fdf.org.uk/fdf-awards.aspx.
Image: CPG Photography