Food and Drink Federation Awards 2017

Sponsored by Santander

The awards are fast becoming the industry benchmark of excellence for innovation, competitiveness and talent.

The shortlist is out! Find out below if your company has been selected for the FDF Awards this year.

Winners will be announced at the FDF Awards ceremony on 21st September, book your places here.

Apprentice of the Year (sponsored by AKTRION FOOD)

There are more apprentices than ever in the food and drink supply chain and these are the potential industry leaders of the future. Our Apprentice of the Year will have shown exceptional progress in both their skills development and studies or made an exceptional contribution to the business through a one-off project.

Those nominated must be undertaking their apprenticeship at the time of nomination. The nomination can be made by a line manager, HR representative or college tutor.

Shortlisted individuals:

  • Bidfood - Elise Rawlins
  • Mondelēz International - Aaron Taylor
  • Mondelēz International - Ellie Marsh
  • Nestlé UK & Ireland - Calum Finn
  • Unilever Food Solutions - Megan Whitehouse
  • Weetabix Food Company - Tom Bird

Campaign of the Year

Companies are becoming ever-more innovative in communicating with their audiences. This category is for in-house or agency teams to enter campaigns centring on sales; driving behaviour change, launches, research or increasing awareness. The campaign can utilise a variety of media including digital, PR or marketing.

The judges will be looking for campaigns that are strongly evaluated against their original aims. Success will be considered against the original objectives and should include a variety of measurement of success, not just AVE or 'likes'. The judges will be looking for a campaign that is creative, achieves its objectives, is clearly evaluated and robustly demonstrates its value for money.

Shortlisted companies:

  • Birds Eye - Captain Birds Eye Campaign
  • KP Snacks - McCoy's: When Flavour Calls
  • Mars Chocolate UK - MALTESERS® celebrates diversity with ads that Look on the Light Side of disability
  • Premier Foods - Dysphagia Chef of the Year Programme
  • SlimFast - Works for Me
  • Spirax Sarco - Steam as an Ingredient

Community Champion (sponsored by Santander)

Have you got an exceptional colleague that is driving community engagement? We are looking for our Community Champion who, through their daily activities, works to align their business with others' needs. It could be someone who works directly with charities, raises money in the workplace or ensures that the needs of communities are taken into account with business strategies or product development.

The community work can be undertaken during or outside of work time but there must be some link with employment. Nominations can be made by line managers, colleagues or HR managers.

Shortlisted individuals:

  • Auntie Val's Kitchens Community Interest Company - Val Challis
  • Central England Co-operative - Neil Matthews
  • Ferrero UK - Wendy Staples
  • Coca-Cola European Partners Ltd - Victoria Prowse

Community Partner (sponsored by General Mills UK Ltd)

Are you making a difference in your community?

Many food and drink supply chain companies work closely with their communities and this can either be a physical community, such as those living close to the factory; a specific sector of society or even an online community.

We are looking for companies that have carried out stand-out work with their chosen community and made a positive difference.

Shortlisted companies:

  • Apetito - Working in partnership with the Trowbridge's senior community
  • British Sugar - Values in Action Programme
  • Calbee - Community Engagement Programme
  • Coca-Cola Great Britain - ParkLives
  • Mondelēz International - Health for Life
  • Plan Bee Ltd - #GenerationBee

Education Initiative

Many companies work positively with schools and colleges to encourage interest in food and drink manufacturing and help to facilitate employment opportunities for young people.

Nominations could be for a one-off event, an ongoing contribution to lessons, schemes to experience the world of work or develop employability skills. Entries can be made for local or national initiatives.

Shortlisted companies:

  • Central England Co-operative - SENse to Aspire Scheme
  • Ferrero UK - Move and Learn
  • Perth College UHI - Continuous Professional Development for Teachers and Lecturers - Food and Drink Manufacturing in Scotland
  • Radnor Hills Mineral Water Company - Healthy School Drinks Project
  • Weetabix Food Company - Apprenticeship Launch and Education establishment links
  • Working Options in Education

Environmental Leadership (sponsored by Kite Packaging)

Everyone is looking to produce more with less and with less impact on the environment. Our Environmental Leadership category is for companies that can meet either of the criteria below:

  • Embedding sustainability throughout a product from development right through to customer use and disposal
  • Ground-breaking initiatives to reduce your company's impact on the planet

Shortlisted companies:

  • Agrico UK Ltd - Arsenal becomes a 'medicine for the land'
  • Mars UK - Moy Wind Farm
  • Mars Food UK - New Office
  • Melton Foods in partnership with Veris Strategies - Cultivate - Sustainable Growth at Melton Foods
  • PepsiCo UK - 50 in 5
  • WRAP - The Courtauld Commitment 2025
  • The Wrigley Company - Waste to Boots and Energy

Exporter of the Year (sponsored by Santander)

British food and drink has never been more popular and exports continue to be a key area for growth. This category is for companies that are entering new markets, creating targeted products or growing sales in established markets. It is open to manufacturers but also to intermediary companies. The judges will look at achievement and ambition relative to the size of the company, not just the largest sales figures!

Shortlisted companies:

  • BFree Foods
  • Crème d'Or Limited
  • Franklin & Sons
  • Loch Duart Salmon
  • Ramsden International
  • Suma Wholefoods
  • Wyke Farms

Food and Drink Engineer of the Year (sponsored by Sheffield Hallam University)

Engineering skills are essential for our industry to grow 20% by 2020 and we want to recognise the people that will make this happen. Entrants can be nominated by a colleague, line manager or self-nominate.

Nominees must:

  • Be currently employed within the UK food and drink manufacturing sector
  • Have contributed to product development over a sustained period or be a promising new entrant to the industry who has led at least one significant project
  • Be a positive role model/ambassador within the company and externally
  • Go 'above and beyond' as an exceptional employee in both their work and behaviours

Shortlisted individuals:

  • The Wrigley Company - Jamie McLaren
  • The Wrigley Company - Sarah Cain
  • Weetabix Food Company - Kevin Bates

Food and Drink Scientist of the Year (sponsored by the Institute of Food Science and Technology)

Scientific developments help to give our industry its competitive edge and we are fortunate to have many talented scientists working within our sector. This award will recognise someone who has made an exceptional contribution to the food and drink sector.

Nominees must:

  • Be currently employed within the UK food and drink manufacturing sector
  • Have contributed to product development over a sustained period or be a promising new entrant to the industry who has led at least one significant project
  • Be a positive role model/ambassador within the company and externally
  • Go 'above and beyond' as an exceptional employee in both their work and behaviours

Shortlisted individuals:

  • Mars Chocolate UK - Mike Zietek
  • Rowett Institute - Wendy Russell
  • Victor's Drinks - Dimitris Papaoikonomou

Good Employer

Employee recruitment and retention is important to a successful company, so show us how your company is a great place to work. Initiatives under this category must specifically benefit your employees and could include employee support, innovative training, workplace wellbeing or an 'above and beyond' approach to flexibility.

Shortlisted companies:

  • Ashbury Labelling - Employee Benefits Programme
  • Huffkins - Employee Development and Training Programme
  • KP Snacks - Achieving Together
  • Reading Scientific Services Ltd - Great Place to Work


How a company has made a contribution to the health and wellbeing of its customers, either through:

  • Product reformulation, changing recipes to reduce salt, fat and sugar content or increasing fibre or vegetable composition
  • Focusing on portion sizes and offering a range of smaller or more adaptable products to encourage healthy eating
  • Creating new products – helping people achieve dietary targets

The category is open to all sizes of companies and achievement will be judged on the following criteria:

  • The business case. As well as being the right thing to do, how did you project fit in with the organisation's wider objectives and business plan
  • Research and evidence. All submissions should clearly show not only the need for the project but also the research, evidence and testing used to support the project
  • The reach of the project. Each submission should clearly show the audience reached and how the change will motivate this audience to focus on health and wellbeing
  • The development process. Whether it is an original concept or extension of existing work, the judges need to see the steps from concept to final project delivery

Shortlisted companies:

  • Danone Nutricia Early Life Nutrition
  • Kerry Taste & Nutrition – TasteSense
  • Nom Noms World Food
  • Nutripot Nutrition Ltd – Healthy fast food on the go
  • Soupologie – Three Mushroom Broth

Innovation (sponsored by Omron)

Many companies within our industry do exceptional work, creating products or developing new ways of thinking and working. Entrants must show either of these:

  • Significant development achieved over the past three years in either product research and/or Development in the food supply chain eg. developing new ingredients to cut waste or improve yield
  • A significant and innovative change to the way you do business eg processes, packaging or logistics

Shortlisted companies:

  • Addo Food Group - Expanding the gluten-free pastry market
  • apetito - Purée Petite
  • Belvoir Fruit Farms - Wine without the hangover
  • Calbee - Yushoi
  • Green Lizard Technologies - Novel purification of vegetable oils using a vitamin based approach
  • Kerry - DairySource
  • Nom Noms World Food - High Protein Hot World Wraps
  • Sticksology - T-Sticks

Rising Star (sponsored by PepsiCo UK)

We're looking for the bright sparks of the food and drink industry with this brand new award category. Open to entrants within their first five years in the industry at any academic and training level, the Rising Star category is for the people with the potential to go far. Nominations can be made by line managers or HR managers.

Shortlisted individuals:

  • Addo Food Group - Gemma Thornton
  • Addo Food Group - Sophie Bohanan
  • Bidfood - David King
  • Bidfood - Sarah Whiddett
  • Weetabix Food Company - Molly Smith

Regional Growth Business (sponsored by Grant Thornton UK LLP)

Central & Northern England:

  • Beckleberry's
  • Sleaford Quality Foods
  • T Soanes and Son
  • Tommy Tucker
  • The Yorkshire Wagyu Company Ltd

Scotland & Northern Ireland:

  • Loch Duart Salmon
  • Mash Direct
  • Nairn's Oatcakes
  • Robertson's Fine Foods
  • Willowbrook Foods

South East England:

  • Bakedin
  • The Bread Factory
  • Huffkins
  • Joe & Seph's Gourmet Popcorn
  • Salter's Must Chup Sauces
  • Simply Ice Creams

South West England:

  • Friska
  • The Great British Biscotti Company
  • Mr Lee's Noodles Company


  • Clarks – The Natural Sweeteners
  • Dawn Meats
  • Lovemore Free From Foods
  • Radnor Hills Mineral Water Company
  • Tiny Rebel
  • Village Dairy

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Follow us at @Foodanddrinkfed . If you want to catch up with our FDF Awards tweets, then simply search Twitter by for the hash tag #FDFAwards.