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The San Joaquin Valley has often been referred to as the bread basket of the world; growing, manufacturing and distributing enough food to feed over one-third of the nation every single day. The Fresno Food Expo New Product Awards acknowledge the San Joaquin Valley's food "trendsetters," with two distinctive awards: The People's Choice Awards and the Buyer's Choice Awards.
"People's Choice Award"*
All entries received for the Fresno Food Expo New Product Awards will be entered into the "People's Choice Award," and will be voted on by the public through the Fresno Food Expo Facebook page and website. In addition, applicants are encouraged to promote their new product through their own marketing avenues to encourage voter participation.
"Buyer's Choice Award"**
The "Buyers Choice Award" will be reviewed and judged by a panel of food industry professionals at the New Product Award VIP Event, then at the Fresno Food Expo by a panel of celebrity judges in the following categories: Innovation and Creativity (20), Presentation & Packaging (30) and Marketability (50).
Fresno Food Expo Awards Criteria
All applications must be submitted by locally owned and headquartered food companies who are confirmed exhibitors in the 2015 Fresno Food Expo. "New Products" are defined as: a new food or beverage product, new packaging for a food or beverage product, a new use for a food or beverage product, a new food or beverage value-added product, or a combination thereof.
★ CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE 2015 FRESNO FOOD EXPO NEW PRODUCT AWARD APPLICATION! ★
2015 CELEBRITY JUDGES
Erna Kubin-Clanin – Proprietress of The Estate by the Elderberries
Chef, Restaurateur and Hotelier Erna Kubin-Clanin's started her career in the restaurant industry in 1969 in Westwood, Los Angeles, and moved to the Central Valley region, just south of Yosemite in 1977 where she began introducing visitors to prix fix, five-course dining cuisines at the Redwood Inn. In 1984 she opened Erna's Elderberry House and determined to complete the Estate with a hotel, she began construction in April 1990 on the adjacent ten-room Château du Sureau with builder Gary Browns. The Estate by the Elderberries, so named for the elderberry bushes that cover the grounds - was completed with the addition of the Château, which bears the French name for the elderberry, baie du sureau, and welcomed its first guests May 1991.
Harv Singh – Whole Foods Local Sourcing Guru
Harv Singh travels all over the West Coast in search of exceptional local farmers and food makers so he can bring their goods to the shelves of Whole Foods Market. Harv is more than just a talent scout for great flavor. He mentors small businesses and helps them grow through our Local Producer Loan Program.
Jim Jarosz – Division Manager, Landsberg Orora Engineered Packaging Solutions
Jim is Division Manager of the Fresno location for Landsberg Orora, a world-class leader in innovative packaging solutions that partners with your business to provide an unsurpassed packaging experience. Whether you need custom corrugated boxes, standard packaging materials, or a fully-automated production line – you will experience the ideal packaging solution.
Sean Topping – DSD Receiving Manager, Local Marketing & Merchandising Lead, Albertson’s-Safeway Northern California Division
Sean Topping connects small, local food producers with the opportunity to merchandise their products in Safeway/Vons stores throughout Northern California, Northern Nevada, and Hawaii. During his 25 years of retail marketing and merchandising experience in category management, pricing and supply chain, Sean has made buying decisions affecting over 1,500 retail stores in food categories such as coffee, condiments, frozen food, juice, pasta sauce, soup, and tea. Whether trying new ethnic flavors during travels or experimenting in the kitchen at home, he truly enjoys the adventure of tasting new foods. His passion for food comes from his father, who employed classic French cooking techniques when scratch-cooking simple meals for the family.