UK food and drink producers proved the nation is at the forefront of innovation in grocery by securing the majority of the top positions in the Fresh Ideas competition at IFE07.
Up to 300 exhibitors at IFE put products forward for a Fresh Ideas award but only 13 were crowned winners by the judges, who included Alf Carr, director of the British Frozen Food Federation and Clive Beddall, consultant and former editor of The Grocer.
UK products awarded for innovation included Carpaccio Salmon, launched in November last year by KB Finest. The ready-to-serve sliced smoked salmon concept was praised by the judges, who said: "This innovative packaging concept offers consumers an exciting high-end starter with minimal preparation."
The Organic Seed and Bean Company, part of Nurture Foods, won an award for its Organic Lavender Fairtrade Chocolate Bar, the packaging of which prevents breakage and melting.
Awards also went to Garnishing Oil from Imaginative Cuisine and Gea Oils' pumpkin seed oil.
Importer Porter Foods won for Fruit Pyramids made by Valley Produce Company. The single-serve premium concept, which comes in fig & almond, apricot & pistachio and pear & hazelnut, is designed to complement a range of cheeses including Stilton, brie and Cheddar. "We know the judges agree with us that they're delicious served with a fine wine and a generous chunk of cheese," said chairman Michael Patton.
Judges also hailed Red Cabbage & Beetroot by the Northern Irish producer Mash Direct; gluten & lactose-free ginger mini loaf from Delicious Alchemy; and the Bread Boat concept from Butt Foods.
Drinks also caught the eye of the judges, including Dr Antonio Martins Coco Juice made from organic green coconuts by NatSnack; Iki Beer by Harro Foods, which contains green tea and the citrus fruit yuzu; and Godminster Vintage's Horseradish Vodka Spirit.
Microgreens by Humber VHB made the top 13 as did Oloves, black Aragon olives packaged for the food-to-go market by Olivacion.