With 17 award categories celebrating excellence across Scottish food and drink, the awards promise to be the food-lovers’ event of the year.
Judges tasted 121 food and drink products and examined submissions from 100 businesses across Scotland before creating the award’s shortlist.
Nominees represent a broad spectrum: from small companies like the family-run Katy Rodger’s Artisan Dairy to organisations with a global reach like Associated Seafoods Ltd. New businesses including Pulsetta (launched just last year) and businesses like Nairn’s Oatcakes, which dates back to 1888, all demonstrate the diversity and vibrancy of one of Scotland’s key industries.
The writer, broadcaster and all-round foodie, Hardeep Singh Kohli, will host the event at the Assembly Rooms in Edinburgh on May 30.
Dubbed the Scottish food and drink ‘Oscars’, the ceremony will be bigger than ever before with 400 guests attending the awards, which are organised by Scotland Food & Drink in partnership with The Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland (RHASS). The event’s headline sponsor is Asda. HeraldScotland is the media partner for this year's awards.
Chief Executive of Scotland Food & Drink, James Withers, said: "The Scotland Food & Drink Excellence Awards recognise Scotland’s best products, businesses, outstanding individuals and industry achievement.Our finalists illustrate the tremendous quality of products and strength of our companies in fields ranging from skills to research, sustainability and exports. It is these companies who contribute to and build our reputation of Scotland as a Land of Food and Drink. We wish all our finalists good luck and look forward to revealing the winners at the awards ceremony on the 30th, which sold out in record time."
Adding his praise to the shortlisted businesses, Stephen Hutt, RHASS’ Chief Executive, said: “As a membership organisation representing the interests of primary food producers, we are delighted to support these awards. With such a focus on food provenance, we are committed to showcasing those involved in the food industry who share our passion for excellence and innovation. We look forward to showcasing the award-winners at this year’s Royal Highland Show.”
The nominees for the Scotland Food and Drink Excellence Awards are:
Soup, preserves and accompaniments: Saladworx Ltd, Hebridean Sea Salt Ltd and Supernature Oil.
Fish and seafood: St James Smokehouse, MacMillan Foods and The Smokehouse.
Bakery and cereal based products: Border Biscuits, Nairn’s Oatcakes Ltd and Dean’s of Huntly Ltd.
Red, white and game: Scotbeef Ltd, Rannoch Smokery and Simon Howie Foods.
Drink (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) : The Orkney Brewery, Get Juiced and Cuddybridge Apple Juice.
Dairy: Taste of Arran and Connage Highland Dairy.
Confectionary and snacking: Mackie’s at Taypack Ltd, Charlotte Flower Chocolates and Iain Burnett – The Highland chocolatier.
Foodservice: Katy Rodger’s Artisan Dairy, Iain Burnett – The Highland Chocolatier and Taste of Arran.
Healthy Eating: Plenta Foods Limited, Nairn’s Oatcakes Ltd and Eat Balanced Ltd.
Marketing: Mama Tea Limited, MacMillan Foods and Scotty Brand Ltd.
Export business of the year: St James Smokehouse and Associations Seafoods Ltd.
Profiting through research: Agrico UK Ltd, Plenta Foods Limited and Eat Balanced Ltd.
Profiting through skills: Bells Food Group Ltd, Dean’s of Huntly Ltd and A K Stoddart Ltd.
Success through working in partnerships: Food and Drink Hub (Scotland) Ltd, We Hae Meat Ltd and Scotty Brand Ltd.
Environmental Sustainability: Knockfarrel Produce, Mackintosh of Glendaveny Ltd and Lightbody of Hamilton (Finsbury Foods).
Food and Drnk Tourism: The Store, Allanwater Brewhouse and Hopeton Farm Shop.
Food and Drink Entrepreneur: St James Smokehouse, Yester Farm Dairies Ltd and Genius Foods.