Gay Lea Foods Co-Operative Ltd. and Nutrinor Cooperative were the big winners of the night at the annual Canadian Grand Prix New Product Awards. Gay Lea Foods Co-Operative Ltd. was presented two awards for its Gay Lea Foods Real Coconut Whipped Cream (best Condiment & Sauce, and the coveted All Canadian Special Award). Nutrinor Cooperative was presented two awards for its Organic Nordic Milk (best Dairy Product, and the much sought-after Healthy Innovation Special Award).
During the June 3rd gala at the Toronto Congress Centre, attended by industry insiders from across the country, the awards program recognized the top new grocery products in food, non-food and private label categories in Canada. A total of 34 awards were presented, as selected by a 30-member jury.
"The Canadian Grand Prix New Product Awards Program is key to our industry as it celebrates creativity and innovation. Investing in new products is the lifeblood of the grocery industry and it is instrumental in driving its success," said Diane J. Brisebois, President & CEO, Retail Council of Canada.
There was a three-way tie for winning three awards each: Procter & Gamble Inc. won awards for Health Care, Personal Care and Paper, Plastic & Foil; Sobeys Inc. won awards for Confectionery, Snack & Dessert, Condiments & Sauces, and Dairy, Eggs, Meat & Seafood; Walmart Canada won for Bakery, Baby Care, and Paper, Plastic & Foil.
The only other company to win multiple Canadian Grand Prix New Product Awards was Metro Brands, G.P., which grabbed private label awards in the Prepared Foods & Entrees category for Irresistibles Flatbread and in the Household Products category for Irresistibles Dish Soap.
In the three other special awards categories, Parmalat Canada Astro Original won Consumer Acceptance. Veg Pro International Inc. Asian-StyleStir Fries won Innovation and Originality. The Clorox Company of Canada, Ltd. LIQUID-PLUMR – Hair Clog Eliminator won Innovative Packaging.
"Canadian Grand Prix New Product Awards Winners are a testament to the very best in product development and consumer satisfaction," said Ms. Brisebois. "We are proud to recognize the teams and brands behind these outstanding new products."
The jury was comprised of consumer goods experts and Marcus Von Albrecht, a B.C. Chef and President of Mava Foods, who served as chair. They evaluated the food and private label products in March at Montreal's Institut de tourisme et d'hôtellerie du Québec, and assessed the non-food products at home over six weeks.
Through a rigorous judging process, the jury graded each entry on five criteria: uniqueness and innovation, product characteristics, presentation and packaging, overall consumer value, and consumer acceptance (household penetration rate of a product).
This year's Canadian Grand Prix New Product Awards Program was open to manufacturers and distributors of all sizes, for products introduced during the 2014 calendar year. Winners and Finalists can use the Canadian Grand Prix New Product Awards logo on their packaging for the next two years.
Full List of Grand Prix New Product Winners:
BABY GOURMET FOODS LTD.: Baby Gourmet Plus
KRAFT CANADA: Kraft Peanut Butter - Holiday Cookie Kit
METRO BRANDS, G.P.: Irresistibles Life Smart Juice Blend (PRIVATE LABEL AWARD WINNER)
Condiments & Sauces
Confectionery, Snack & Dessert
Dairy, Egg, Meat & Seafood
Deli, Egg, Meat & Seafood
SOFINA FOODS INC.: Deli Naturally!
SCOTSBURN DAIRY GROUP: Scotsburn Premium Inclusion Ice Cream Bars
Frozen or Refrigerated Prepared Food & Entrees
Fruits, Vegetables & Produce
Paper, Plastic & Foil
Prepared Food & Entrees
METRO BRANDS, G.P.: Irresistibles Flatbread (PRIVATE LABEL AWARD WINNER)
Shelf Stable Prepared Food & Entrees
All Canadian (SPECIAL AWARD)
Consumer Acceptance Award (SPECIAL AWARD)
Healthy Innovation Award (SPECIAL AWARD)
Innovation and Originality (SPECIAL AWARD)
Innovative Packaging (SPECIAL AWARD)