Overall Winner The undoubted pick of the bunch this year were the Scallop and Bacon Brochettes from Dawnfresh. This won the fish and seafood category and took the Supreme award by unanimous decision of the judging panel. The product is part of Tesco's Finest range and this award is another feather in the cap for Dawnfresh. It has won Tesco's Gold Q Award and was the BBC Good Food Guides Meal Of the Month last year. It is listed nationally and is one of 10 Tesco Finest products the company produces. Marketing manager Gary Fisher says: "This is the result of continual development by our NPD team combined with increasing consumer demand for products which satisfy in terms of innovation, premium quality and ease of use. "We have focused our attention on producing premium quality products in a variety of formats; frozen, fresh, chilled and convenience. Our aim is to provide our customers and consumers with the best possible seafood product offerings, ones that will excite and deliver consistent quality." category WINNER confectionery and snack sector Duncans is exploiting a gap in the children's confectionery market with its Dotty Bar - a milk chocolate bar containing candy coated beans. The quality of the product, its packaging and marketing made it the best product in the confectionery and snack sector. It is widely distributed in Scotland with listings in Safeway, Somerfield, Kwik Save, Semi-Chem, cash and carries and independents. Sales director Verity Missen says: "We hope that winning this award will heighten awareness of both Duncans and the Dotty Bar. We have very encouraging rates of sale where it is stocked, which proves consumers love the concept and keep coming back for more." As well as its branded products the company produces private label products for Morrisons, the Ministry of Defence, Whittard and Green and Black. Its range includes organic. category WINNER export category Gordon and Macphail's continued innovation and its focus on export markets paid dividends when it took the top award in the export category. This year they put forward the Private Collection range aimed at the upper end of the market. These are from the Caol Ila and Imperial distilleries and come in three different wood finishes, Claret, Cognac and Calvados. Imperial is a Speyside distillery which was shut down in 1998. Caol Ila has been producing whisky on Islay since 1846. All the whisky went into the wood finish casks in 1998 and was bottled last summer. The company said the whiskies ­ all under £30 ­ are in response to a growing consumer demand for products which are unusual, different or unique. category WINNER meat category Salami is not usually seen as a traditional Scottish dish but the Scotch whisky version created by Highland Country Foods was good enough to beat off stiff opposition to win the meat category. The company launched it 12 months ago and it now accounts for 70% of the sales of its delicatessen range. This marks another step for the company in a transition from being a bulk supplier of bacon and hams to providing value added products with a strong Scottish name. So far the salami sales have been restricted to sales in the north east of Scotland through delicatessens and gift and souvenir shops. Its expansion into greater distribution has been restricted by foot and mouth. Marketing executive Damien Wurpillot says: "It has been extremely popular and there has been no real competition for it. We are hoping this award will bring us more sales and give us access into more outlets. We are talking to the multiples." The product was created by the company's own fleischmeister who was brought over from Germany. Wurpillot says: "We wanted to create a delicatessen range unique to Scotland but one of the main problems was that we could not find anyone with the butchery skills to produce it." The ingredients are all from Scotland and the company has full traceability. category WINNER One of the groundbreaking products in the competition came from Planet Scotland with its Highland Ice Premier Scotch Vodka and Gin. The idea was the brainchild of Russell Jamieson who believed there was a gap in the market for this type of quality product. The company was created in 1999 and the products were launched at the end of last year. Jamieson has since been building up distribution and has appointed wholesalers. He has also begun negotiating with the multiple grocers and off licence chains. Jamieson says: "We do not have the funds that the multinationals have so the publicity with winning this award will help with brand awareness. It also endorses the quality of the products which is a good selling point. We will be putting a label on the bottles promoting our award which should increase consumer interest." category WINNER fruit and vegetable category Macsween's Vegetarian Haggis has aroused controversy since it was first developed in 1984 but it has now become widely accepted as an alternative version of Scotland's traditional dish. The consistent quality and persuasive marketing won the company the top award in the fruit and vegetable category. Marketing manager Jo Macsween says: "I am delighted with how the vegetarian haggis has developed since its inception. This award recognises how the concept of haggis has moved beyond its traditional roots to embrace a wider audience." The family firm undertakes a constant programme of product tastings, PR, sponsorship and web site development to encourage consumers to try the product. This, said Macsween has brought it wide acceptance. It has listings in Tesco, Safeway (Scotland) and independent retailers and butchers throughout the UK. category WINNER Dairy and Egg category The Dairy and Egg category was won by The Orkney Creamery for its Dairy Ice Cream. The company started out as a supplier of milk to doorsteps on the island but the consumer trend for semi skimmed and skimmed milk left it with a surplus of cream. Owner Dennis Bichan began producing ice cream from the surplus in 1995. In 1997 he introduced it to the Scottish mainland and now it is a major part of his company's business. It is sold all over Scotland and last month won a regional listing in Safeway. Bichan says: "We are hoping this award will put us on the map. We are small firm from a small island. The ice cream is becoming more important. It started out as a sideline and is now taking over as the main business. There is a better margin in ice cream." There is a wide range of flavours and pack sizes. category WINNER Soup, Preserves, Pickle and Sauce category Isabella's Preserves has been developing a niche as a small scale high quality producer and has entered products for these awards on a number of occasions. This year it put forward its Hot Banana Chutney and its Wild Cherry and Bramble Chutney and won the Soup, Preserves, Pickle and Sauce category. The two products were created for meat supplier Donald Russell which wanted them for its mail order catalogue. This was a new venture for company owners Isabella and Alistair Massie who have concentrated on supplying 150 shops in Scotland as well as the Scottish Parliament and Gleneagles. Alistair Massie says: "We probably provide some of the most expensive jams in Britain and we are in the gift market rather than grocery. We do not want to be in the big supermarkets. We want to keep in our niche. The key thing is quality. Ours are hand made products done in small batches in a small factory on our farm." He said the company has been going for five years and he and his wife have just begun making a living out of it. category WINNER bakery and Cereal Based products category Walkers Shortbread is famous for one particular style of product but it won the bakery and Cereal Based products category with a non shortbread product ­ Traditionally Baked Scottish Biscuits. Managing director James Walker explains: "These were launched two months ago and they have been very well received as being something totally different. They have helped us to be known as more than just a shortbread company and has helped us lift our profile. "We will take as much advantage of this award as we can as it will give us extra recognition." The range comprises six styles: Sultana, Stem Ginger, Toffee and Pecan, Fruit and Lemon, Chocolate Chunk and Hazelnut, and Chocolate Chunk. These are all packaged in the company's red tartan. category WINNER food service award Macphie of Glenbervie's most successful new food service product launch to date took the food service award. It is a range of traditional custards which is sold in wholesalers throughout the UK. It is designed as a high volume line and sells at £1.60 per litre pack. It only went on the market last December but second quarter sales showed a threefold increase on the first three months. This market is led by Bird's and Ambrosia and it has been considered there was not room for another. But Macphie's head of marketing Helen Pratt says: "Customer feedback indicates our custard offers a more natural colour and better taste and texture. This award is recognition of our hard work in development, marketing and sales and we hope it will highlight our product to the widest possible audience." Lifetime achievement award Biscuit manufacturer Tunnock's has been presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland. It joins a select group of recipients which comprises Gordon Baxter of Baxter's of Speyside, Walker's Shortbread and Ian Galloway of Scotbeef. The award is made each year to a person, product or company which has helped to put Scotland on the world stage and earn it a reputation for quality, innovation and excellence. This year's award was accepted by Boyd Tunnock, grandson of his company's founder. {{Z SUPPLEMENTS }}