In a glittering ceremony at the Marriott Hotel in Grosvenor Square, London this week, 147 new products in 32 categories were shortlisted for the New Product Awards. Read on to find out who won what and why
Adult soft drinks
Fentimans Valencian Orange Tonic Water
This “excellent product” from Northumberland’s Fentimans would be “great with gin” shoppers said. They enjoyed the “very fresh flavour”, as did our expert judges, who praised the “lovely aftertaste” of this “authentic” mixer. “The packaging is ideal” they added.
- Fentimans Pink Rhubarb Tonic Water
- Drench Mandarin & Lemon
- Franklin & Sons Succulent Pomegranate & Floral Hibiscus with Delicate Rose
- The Artisan Drinks Company Violet Blossom Tonic
77 Blush Grapefruit & Rose Gin Liqueur
This “distinctive, sharp drink” offered “rose on the nose” and was “easy to drink” according to our expert panel. There was praise for the “grown-up taste” and “giftable” bottle. Shoppers said the liqueur was an “inventive” variant and “refreshing”, though some considered it “more of a girl’s drink” than an all-rounder.
- Neptune Rum Gold
- 77 Berry Raspberry & Pomegranate Gin Liqueur
- Balans Lime
- Stowford Press Mixed Berries
Deli Kitchen 4 Sliced Focaccia
A “simple but well-executed concept”, this focaccia from Signature Flatbreads, sold under the Deli Kitchen brand, won favour with our judges, who praised it for being “good value (rsp: £1.35 for 360g), family-friendly, and convenient”. The consensus was that the focaccia delivered to high-quality standards and was “tasty, soft and light”, making it a great alternative to sliced bread.
- Deli Kitchen 6 Brioche Folded Flatbreads
- Mission Kids Disney Kitchen Strawberry Flavoured Wraps
- Mission Kids Disney Kitchen Ketchup Flavoured Wraps
GoFigure Muesli – Matcha Tea & Pistachio
This “innovative” product tasted great, and provided a healthy on-the-go breakfast. A single-serve format, it sparked a great deal of interest among our judges, who were impressed by both the taste and the innovative use of “on-trend” ingredients (matcha tea and pistachio). They felt this would likely attract a millennial audience. They also praised the product for the fact it didn’t use any plastic as part of its packaging. Again, this would likely chime with consumers, many of whom care deeply about the issue of plastic pollution. Some, however, felt the price of £1.75 for 75g was “a bit steep”.
- Nestlé Box Bowls
Baby & toddler food
Ella’s Kitchen Organic Melty Sticks – Cheese & Apple
This “very innovative” finger food for weaning was “on trend” and a “great big size for kids to hold on to” according to our expert judges. Shoppers were equally pleased. The snacks had a “great taste” and were handy when on the go.
- Piccolo Organic Mighty Squeeze Pear, Pea, Banana & Avocado
- Babease Organic Beef Ragu
- Kiddylicious Little Bistro Oaty Porridge – Blueberry Flavour
- Little Freddie Grass Fed Beef Lasagne with a Pinch of Parmesan
Cakes & biscuits
Reese’s Rounds Biscuits
With a “balanced flavour”, these sweet biscuits had “good peanut butter taste without being overpowering” our experts said. Shoppers favoured the “crunchy” biscuit and “smooth” chocolate, though some found the peanut butter “sickly”.
- Flipz Milk Chocolate Coated Pretzels
- Cadbury Heroes Cupcakes
- Fox’s Chocolatey Squares Luxury Biscuits
- Fox’s Party Rings Party Bucket
- McVitie’s Jaffa Cakes Nibbles
- Mr Kipling Unicorn Slices
Sushi Discovery Box
The Sushi Discovery Box from the Hana Group was commended by shoppers as an “exciting new idea”. They loved the freshness and the “vibrant” appearance. A good weekend treat, the sushi was “delicious, tasty and moist” consumers added. Judges agreed this was “better than the average supermarket sushi”, praising its “relevance and versatility”. It was “a good option for grab and go”.
- Unearthed Iberico Presa Free Range Pork
- Ginsters Cornish Handcrafted Cornish Pasty
- Smörgåsbord Original Swedish Meatballs
Hellmann’s Vegan Mayo
This “great product” from Hellmann’s was considered a “new and exciting idea” and “bang on trend”. It impressed judges with its “strong” texture, attractive packaging and impressive branding. Though “a little on the expensive side” at £2.15 for 270g, it was a “great alternative” for those following a vegan lifestyle. The “Hellmann’s quality was not compromised” and it tasted “just like regular mayonnaise”. Some even said they would choose this product over regular mayonnaise, and remarked it would make “a great pot salad”, while shoppers enjoyed the “good taste and colour consistency”.
- Heinz Tomato Ketchup No Added Sugar & Salt
Boursin Velvety – Garlic & Herb
This whipped version of the well-established “standard” Boursin offer impressed our judges. They were extremely excited by this “high quality” product, which they said was “utterly delicious, fluffy, light and airy”, with a “traditional Boursin flavour”.
- Al Fresco Cheese Sausages (Plain)
- Al Fresco Barbecue Camembert with Honey & Thyme Sauce
- Al Fresco Cheese Steaks (Chilli)
- Ilchester Wensleydale with Elderflower, Blueberry, Lemon & Rose Petals
Vimto Jelly Babies
A “well-executed combo of two classics” said our experts.
- Cadbury Darkmilk
- Divine Chocolate Rich Dark Chocolate with Turmeric & Ginger 85%
- Doisy & Dam Maple, Toasted Rice & Pink Salt Snaps
- Haribo Squidglets
- Joe & Seph’s Milk Chocolate Popcorn Bites
- Walkers Nonsuch Salted Caramel Toffees
- Seed & Bean Organic Sweet Orange & Thyme Fine Dark Chocolate Mini Bar
Crisps & snacks
McCoy’s Muchos – Sour Cream & Onion
This tortilla snack from McCoy’s, “inspired by the street kitchens of Mexico”, impressed our judges with its “crispy and crunchy” texture and spicy flavour. For some shoppers, though, the price of £1.99 for 180g was an issue.
- Walkers Max Strong – Jalapeño & Cheese
- McCoy’s Muchos – Smoky Chilli Chicken
- Hula Hoops Flavarings – Spicy
- Hula Hoops Flavarings – Tangy Cheese
- Propercorn Salted Microwave Popcorn
- Sensations Street Mix – Mexico City
Califia Farms Chocolate Soy Free Coconut Almond Blend
This blend of water, sugar, coconut, almonds and chocolate performed well with buyers of plant-based products. They called it “delicious” with a “nice aftertaste”. At £2.29 for a 750ml, it was “pretty good value”. Our experts praised the “delightful premium packaging”. The product was “well-executed” and “easy to drink”.
- Alpro Oat Unsweetened Drink
- Alpro Caffe Ethiopian Coffee & Soya Caramel Cup
- Innocent Unsweetened Hazelnut
Cooking sauces & marinades
Belazu Rose Harissa Pesto
This “fantastic” pesto was named by our judges as the overall NPA winner. It was described as “scrummy” and “very tangy, full of flavour, with a subtle kick”. They hailed it as being “great value for money, and a very elegant brand” and as a “store cupboard must-have”. “A great deal of thought and care went into the whole product,” they added. “Overall, this is a fantastic product.”
- Petti Organic Datterini Tomato Passata with White Truffle
- Homepride All-American Mac & Cheese, Classic
- Sharwood’s Japanese Katsu Curry Sauce
Président Butter with Sea Salt Crystals
This French-produced butter from Lactalis McLelland was praised by judges for its attractive presentation. The plastic, butter dish-style pack was “sure to be noticed in the chiller cabinet”. Our experts praised the butter’s “creaminess and smoothness”. Many shoppers were also keen. They liked the “good colour” and “smooth texture”, though some were put off by the salt crystals.
A premium option (rsp: £2.50 for 250g), the butter was widely considered as more of an indulgence for use on special occasions than for every day.
- Lurpak Softest
Coppenrath & Wiese Apple Caramel Crumble Tart
This “exciting, new” frozen dessert from Coppenrath & Wiese was considered attractive, with the “novel recipe twist” proving particularly appealing. Judges felt it was an innovative product in terms of the selection of ingredients, and they praised the low price point (rsp: £1.50 for 500g). They also agreed it tasted “homemade”.
- Gü Limited Edition Salted Caramel Cheesecakes
- Coppenrath & Wiese Profiterole Gateau
- Cadbury Dairy Milk Caramel Cheesecake
- Cadbury Dairy Milk Cheesecake
Frozen meals & accompaniments
Bannisters Yorkshire Family Farm Garlic & Rosemary Roasting Potatoes
An “exciting new idea” from Bannisters Yorkshire Family Farm, this product impressed with its “Yorkshire provenance”. Judges loved the taste of rosemary and garlic, which was “delicious but not overpowering”. They also praised the attractive packaging. “This is a good trade-up on standard roasties,” said one expert.
- Birds Eye Chunky Fish Fingers
- Birds Eye Sweet Potato Waffles
- Strong Roots Broccoli & Purple Carrot Bites
Gluten-free – savoury
Whitby Seafoods Gluten Free Wholetail Scampi
“Crispy and tasty scampi with nice large pieces,” said shoppers. Our experts were similarly impressed. “Genuinely delicious whether you’re gluten-free or not,” they enthused.
- The White Rabbit Pizza Co The Cheeky Chorizo Gluten Free Pizza
- Amy’s Kitchen Breakfast Scramble Wrap
- Mash Direct Beer Battered Onion Rings
- The White Rabbit Pizza Co The Mozzarella Master Gluten Free Pizza
- Whitby Seafoods Gluten Free Cod Fillet Goujons
Gluten-free – Sweet
Freaks of Nature Dairy & Gluten Free Chocolate Fudge Hot Pudding
Sweetened with coconut sugar and coconut nectar, this single-serve dessert is a cacao sponge with a dark chocolate fudge sauce. Shoppers considered it to be new and different. They were also delighted by its “excellent taste” and “very nice soft texture” – though some felt it was “a bit small for the price” of £2 for 100g. Our experts called the pudding “convincingly indulgent”. The pack design and glass ramekin also drew much praise.
- Nairn’s Gluten Free Oat Bar
- Schär Melto
Dalston’s Soda Light – Real Squeezed Rhubarb
This sparkling soft drink from artisanal brand Dalston’s was “easy to drink” and “smells good” according to consumers, though they found it “a little gassy” while some were a little put off by the “expensive” £1.09 price point. Our expert judges liked the soda’s “natural flavour of rhubarb” and the fact it was “not too sweet”. The overall product felt “sophisticated and grown-up” they said, and would mix very well with vodka and ice.
- Highland Spring Still Water Eco Bottle
- Red Bull Sugar Free
- Red Bull Tropical Edition Sugar Free
Healthier sweet snacks
Nairn’s Coconut & Chia Oat Biscuits – 55% Less Sugar
Described by Nairn’s as its “lowest-sugar biscuit yet”, this innovation is sweetened in part by dietary fibre and promises to contain “55% less sugar than the average sweet biscuit”. Each Nairn’s biscuit in the 200g pack provides 45 calories. Our experts said it was “justifiably healthier without compromising on taste”, though it was “a little dry”. Consumers felt the “excellent quality” snack “would go well with cheese” and was “value for money” at £1.39.
- Benecol Blueberry and Cranberry Fruit & Oat Bar
- Bounce Salted Caramel Protein Energy Ball
- Fulfil Chocolate Salted Caramel Vitamin & Protein Bar
Healthier crisps & snacks
Corners Pop Veggie Crisps Sea Salt & Balsamic
These pop veggie crisps were considered an “exciting new idea” by our experts, who agreed the texture was “crispy and crunchy” and the packaging design was attractive. Although shoppers felt the product was quite expensive, at £1.80 for 85g, they said the flavour was “lovely” and the taste of sea salt “really came through”. The fact the product is made from vegetables was also a plus.
- Coconut Puffs – Cheese
- Coconut Puffs – Thai Chilli
- Corners Pop Protein Crisps – Sweet Barbecue
Tea India – Harmony & Balance
With its blend of fennel, cinnamon, tulsi (holy basil) and ginger, this herbal infusion was praised by shoppers for its “gorgeous strong taste”. It was “very easy to drink” they said. Our experts, meanwhile, were attracted to the “intriguing ingredients” and “delightful packaging”. All in all, “not a bad cuppa” they said, though they didn’t think it the most innovative addition to its category.
- Costa Coffee Latte Pods – Dolce Gusto Compatible
- Dualit Compostable Coffee Bags – Intense Blend
- Dualit Compostable Coffee Bags – Sumatra Mandheling Blend
This toothpaste for kids aged nine to 12 was well received by shoppers. They were attracted to the packaging, and delighted by the “very minty” taste. Our experts said it was “very well thought-through” and provided “good information”.
- Soapberry Sensitive Water Wipes
- EasiYo Yogurt Starter Kit
- Energizer Ultimate Lithium Battery Coin CR2032
- Little Soap Company Organic Bar Soap Grapefruit & Orange
- OPSO Reed Diffusers: Home Fragrances Made from Natural Tree Resin – Nordic Birch Forest
Pet food & treats
Lily’s Kitchen Woofbrush
Our experts said this ‘toothbrush’ chew for dogs was a “clever concept” and “reassuringly approved by vets”. Shoppers rated it as “excellent” and effective in freshening dogs’ breath.
- Crave Chicken & Turkey Dog Dry Food
- Barking Heads Beef Waggington
- Blink Fish Fillets & Roasted Chicken Complete Cat Food Pouch
- Butcher’s Nourishing Food for Dogs Tripe 6 Pack
- Pooch & Mutt Chicken, Pumpkin & Pea Carton
- Scrumbles Grain Free Turkey Wet Dog Food
Sharwood’s Low Fat Poppadoms
This Indian-inspired product from Premier Foods provides just 0.9g of fat per 100g. Judges praised its “good poppadom flavour” and a level of rigidity that was “good for dipping”. Shoppers felt it would make a “good low-fat weeknight standby or a weekend treat”. However, some said the salt content was too high, which rather cancelled out the health benefits of the lower fat claim. Additionally, some thought the price was too high, at £1.99 for 94g.
- Wall’s Sausage Thins
- Unearther Reduded Fat Milano Salami
- Sacla’ Reduced Fat Basil Pesto
Bio-tiful Cacao Kefir Smoothie
This “good quality” smoothie was “authentic” said our panel of expert judges. It had “great texture”, “nice sweetness” and was “generally quite impressive” they added. But they felt it might be a “touch sour for the younger mainstream”.
- Willy’s Natural Energy Drink made with Apple Cider Vinegar & Green Tea Kombucha
- Captain Kombucha Atlantic Raspberry
- Wonder Drink – Asian Pear & Ginger Kombucha
- Wonder Drink – Green Tea & Lemon Kombucha
Mushroom Pesto Pasta Meal Kit
This meal kit from Muscle Foods, designed for a “no-fuss no-waste” approach “brings something new to the category”. Our judges said the flavours were delicious, and the serving size “very generous” for one person. They also said they felt the concept was “innovative and exciting”. They praised the meal kit for being a “convenient, no-waste offer”, and would be a “good standby” as a mid-week meal solution.
- Prep Co – Thai Green Curry
- Loyd Grossman Pasta Italia Pots – Sundried Tomato and Basil
Yorkshire Provender Super Broccoli Soup with Yorkshire Cheddar
This low-fat soup’s branding, informative packaging and provenance attracted shoppers. They called it an “unusual mix but tasty”. It was “creamy” and “nice and thick”. Their view was shared by our experts, who admired the product for being healthy “without compromising on taste”. It was “very well made” with a “perfect” level of salt.
- Yorkshire Provender Aromatic Thai Carrot Soup
- Heinz Pot Soup – Cream Of Tomato
- Yorkshire Provender Omero’s Red Pepper Soup with Chorizo
Sports nutrition & weight management
Wow Hydrate Protein – Summer Fruits
With 4g of collagen protein per 100ml, this 500ml sports drink is aimed at “refuelling the body without carbs or sugar”. Positive comments from shoppers included “refreshing” and “nice taste” – while our experts admired the “novel format” of the bottle’s push cap that ‘fires’ ingredients into the liquid.
- Bam Organic High Protein Banoffee Shake
- Grenade Carb Killa Birthday Cake
- SlimFast Advanced Vitality Berry Blast Meal Replacement Shake
- SlimFast Advanced Vitality Strawberry & Blueberry Burst Meal Replacement Shake
Gü Hazelnut & Chocolate Crunchy Spread
At £2.50 per 200g, this sweet spread was considered “great value for money” by our judges. They felt the proportion of nuts to chocolate was spot on, and were impressed by the sustainability credentials of the product, which contains no palm oil and is packed in a reusable glass jar.
- Del Monte Fruit Fusions Gold Pineapple in Coconut Water
- John West Infusions Salad Tuna Fillets – Chilli & Garlic
- Del Monte Gold Pineapple Chunks in Juice
- Sarson’s Pickle in 15 Lightly Seasoned Vinegar Blend
- John West Easy Peel Mackerel – Smokehouse BBQ Sauce
Vegan & vegetarian
Pukka Veggie Leek & Potato Pie in a Creamy Cheddar Sauce
A “new and exciting” product, Pukka’s pie was considered “a handy size for midweek meals”. Judges praised it for being “extremely delicious” with a “generous filling” and “flexitarian appeal”.
- La Boulangere Vegan 6 Pains au Chocolat
- La Boulangere Vegan 6 Croissants
- The Meatless Farm Co Plant Based Mince
- Gosh! Veggie Sausages with Sage & Black Pepper
- Goodfella’s Vegan Stonebaked Falafel Pizza
Onken Naked Yogurt – Peach & Passion Fruit
The fact this yoghurt from Onken has only three ingredients was a big draw for judges and shoppers alike. Judges hailed this product for its “clean and clear packaging design”, as well as its “smooth” texture and “creamy, fruity” taste. Shoppers agreed this would work well as a mid-week snack, though they agreed that its high quality was such that it would work equally well as a weekend treat.
- Tims Dairy The London Collection Mango & Turmeric Greek Style Yogurt
- Lizi’s Vanilla Breakfast Drink
How our New Product Awards work – and how to enter in 2020
Each product in The Grocer New Product Awards undergoes a two-stage assessment. It is first tried and tested by at least 50 consumers, all under controlled conditions, and assessed for visual appearance, taste, texture, packaging and value for money (among other measures) before moving on for further evaluation by our expert panel. Products are then, where relevant, prepared in professional kitchens, as they undergo scrutiny by expert judges, with the combined scores from the two stages used to determine the winners.
Former winners have described the process as “fantastic recognition” for all their hard work, providing opportunities to build up bigger and better retail listings, and “reinforce a brand’s premium credentials” by walking away with a prestigious and hard-fought award.
And from the moment our 2019 winners are crowned at a glittering ceremony at the Marriott Hotel in Grosvenor Square hotel this week, registrations will be open for next year’s competition.
So, whether you’ve launched a healthy snack, a premium bodywash, an exquisite dessert or the next big thing in gut health, head straight to thegrocernewproductawards.co.uk to register.
Brands that believe they have the winning formula across one of numerous food, drink and non-food categories can register their interest immediately by heading to the New Product Awards website, where all 2019 finalists, winners and photos will be published.
Entries for the 2020 awards will officially open from December this year. The deadline for entries will be in late February 2020.