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Supporting small suppliers with NZ Food Awards

Countdowns involvement with the NZ Food Awards gives us a wonderful opportunity to support the industry and engage with smaller suppliers who need help to cross the hurdles towards creating commercially successful products, says Nikhil Sawant, Merchandise Manager Perishables & Deli.

Nikhil travelled around the country to meet with suppliers wanting to enter the awards, giving them insights into current market trends and also the process of engaging with a large retailer such as Countdown.

“Countdown wants to be part of the community of foodies and help support and grow our food producers both here and internationally,” says Nikhil. “We are delighted to be involved in this amazing showcase of elite food and beverages, this is the ultimate foodie event. Over the last 30 years, these awards have been a way to encourage and reward the innovators among New Zealand food and beverage manufacturers, whether artisanal or large,” says Nikhil.

“Many of the products we’ve encountered through our involvement with the awards are now on sale on our shelves.” The awards are a highlight on the industry calendar and showcase the best of the best amongst New Zealand’s food and beverage industry.

The award winners, those that made the most outstanding innovations in New Zealand’s food and beverage industry, were announced at a gala evening at Massey University on 12 October.

The top winners were:

  • Artisan Food Producer Award: Gathered Game (Premium Wild Venison Salami and Wild Venison Deer Sticks)
  • BITE Gourmet Award: Poppy & Olive Ltd (Chocolate Hazelnut Butter)
  • NZTE Export Innovation Awards: Spring Sheep Milk Co
  • Massey University Supreme Award: Spring Sheep Milk Co