New Product Awards
Presented by Baker Peterson Franklin, CPA, LLP
The Fresno Food Expo New Product Awards is a showcase of Central California’s new and innovative food and beverage products, providing an exciting platform for participating exhibitors to promote their new product or packaging concept to the Expo’s buyer and consumer audiences.
Our region’s food trendsetters are acknowledged with two distinctive awards annually, including: the People’s Choice Award and the Buyer’s Choice Award.
People’s Choice Award
This award provides an opportunity for our consumer audience to participate by voting on their favorite new product. All entries received for the 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. Voting for this award will run from Wednesday, July 13 – Monday, July 25.
Buyer’s Choice Award
This highly sought after industry award is determined by two panels of retail and foodservice buyers in two distinct rounds of judging, including the Preliminary Judging Round and the Celebrity Judging Round. The Preliminary Judging Round will take place at the New Product Award Preview Event on July 12, 2017. Finalists from this round will go onto the Celebrity Judging Round, which will take place on Exhibitor Set-Up day, July 26, 2017 at the Fresno Convention & Entertainment Center, Hall II. The Buyer’s Choice Award will acknowledge 1st, 2nd and 3rd Place Winners.
A Special Congratulations to the 2016 Award Winners:
Buyer’s Choice Award:
1st Place: Aubrey’s Jerky
SnackMasters Gourmet Jerky
2nd Place: 99 Golden Ale
Tioga Sequoia Brewing Company
3rd Place: Lanna Cold Brew
Lanna Coffee Co.
People’s Choice Award:
ARO Gourmet Pistachios Grower’s Reserve with Himalayan Pink Salt, ARO Pistachio
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.
Allan Grice is a Sales Manager for United Natural Foods Inc. Allan's experience includes 40 years in the food industry specializing in Retail Foods. He began his career with Alpha Beta Food stores in 1973. He joined the Tony's Fine Foods team in 1985 which is now known as UNFI. His responsibilities include Division Sales Manager and managing Corporate Accounts. His vision is to lead customers and his sales team to profitable growth and success. Allan Grice's knowledge of the food industry has put him as a leader in the industry. Allan resides in Clovis California and is married with two sons and one granddaughter.
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 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.
Harv Singh, co-founder and CEO of Forager Ventures, is an accomplished local food forager who has "foraged" and nurtured some of the most innovative natural, organic brands for Whole Foods Market since 2006. Harv was one of Whole Foods Markets original forager, who cultivated over 1,000 new local supplier relationships for all product categories and helped develop Whole Foods Markets local program into a successful model for mentoring and supporting the growth of emerging local food entrepreneurs in Northern California. In his role at Forager Ventures, Harv along with his retail partners and business advisors seek out innovative brands and accelerate their growth in the natural food channel.