Chinese wholesaler Wing Yip has been appointed an OBE for services to the Oriental food industry heading a list of leading figures in the grocery industry recognised in the New Year’s Honours list.

Yip, who immigrated to the UK from Hong Kong and built up the Wing Yip cash & carry business from scratch, said he was immensely proud to have received the honour.

“I don’t know why it was given to me perhaps because of the charitable work we do through the Wing Yip Foundation,” he said. “It means a lot to me I chose to come to this country, which is now my home, so I’m very proud.” The Wing Yip Foundation has given bursaries to 300 young people to help them attend university.

Wing Yip had the highest pre-tax profits margin of all the wholesalers in The Grocer Big 30 last year. It made pre-tax profits of £6.9m on a turnover of £91m, representing a margin of 7.6%.

Other grocery figures to receive honours include Andy Pope, The Co-operative Group’s national business crime partnership manager, who helped co-ordinate Home Office and police initiatives to tackle business crime. He was awarded an OBE.

Alastair Salvesen, chairman of Dawnfresh Seafoods, was awarded a CBE for services to the arts and charity in Scotland. Salvesen led a management buyout of Dawnfresh in 1983.