Three Northern Ireland food companies have been shortlisted in the prestigious annual Grocer Gold Awards.
The three companies in the running for the highly influential awards run by the magazine that’s regarded as the single most important in retailing throughout the UK and Ireland are:
Henderson Retail, Newtownabbey, in the Independent Retail Chain of the Year. The Henderson Group is Northern Ireland’s biggest retail and wholesale food supplier. It is the franchise holder of Eurospar, Spar and Vivo food stores;
Mash Direct, Comber, in SME Brand of the Year. Mash Direct is now a major innovator and supplier of vegetable and convenience meals. It is a family business based on a family farm in County Down. The company supplies supermarkets and other retailers across the UK, Ireland, other parts of Europe, the US and Middle East;
Moo to You, Belfast Startup of the Year. Moo to You is a food delivery service launched by Streamvale Open Farm, Dundonald, in 2020 during the pandemic to enable people shielding at home to have access to locally sourced food. The small business has developed into a successful service covering Northern Ireland.
The Grocer Gold Awards 2021 will be the biggest programme ever.
The enhanced line-up of categories sees more emphasis given to products and suppliers, with new awards for alcoholic drinks brands, household goods, personal care and petfood, as well as the return of Own-label and Branded Supplier of the Year competition.
In total there are 34 awards to be won, in a line-up that aims to capture the full and diverse contribution that the grocery retail, wholesale and supply sector has made since the outbreak of the pandemic, said The Grocer editor Adam Leyland.
“No-one can be in any doubt of the value of the grocery sector to this country since April 2020 in particular.
“The effort has been heroic, with an extraordinary and enterprising response accompanied by some stunning performances across the sector, from the smallest community stores, to multinational fmcg giants.
“The Gold Awards has always celebrated the industry’s greatest accomplishments. In 2021 it’s fitting that there will be more awards than ever, so the celebrations can be the biggest and best ever.”