Health and convenience triumph at New Zealand Food Awards

A vegetable noodle range by The Whole Mix Co has emerged as the Massey University Supreme Award winner at this year’s New Zealand Food Awards.

The Whole Mix Co Limited also won the Massey University Health and Wellbeing Award and the James & Wells Business Innovation Award for its noodle range that includes Zucchini, Butternut, Medley (Beetroot, Carrot, Zucchini) and Kumara variants. Judges said the products are a tasty and nutritious alternative to pasta, can be used in stirfrys and salads, or eaten straight from the package – and that their growing popularity reflects some of the changing tastes of New Zealand consumers.

The collective team of judges says the vegetable noodle range rides the wave of market demand for easy-to-serve fresh vegetables, with a twist.

“These prepacked, spiralised, microwaveable vegetable noodles, prepared from locally grown vegetables, are delicious, nutritious and fill a much-needed gap in the fresh vegetable market,” the team of judges said. “Consumers are crying out for fresh products they can cook or prepare quickly and easily.”

Recognising New Zealand innovation

The 11 category winners and Supreme Award winner were unveiled at the gala dinner event at Auckland’s SkyCity Convention Centre on Wednesday evening.

The awards, which have been running since 1987, celebrate creative innovation from New Zealand’s food and beverage manufacturers. More than 220 products were entered this year, with 67 products from 54 companies being named finalists.

Christchurch-based company Alliance Group Ltd also took out two award categories for its Te Mana Lamb – the Frozen Award, in association with Palmerston North City Council, and the New Zealand Food Safety Primary Sector Products Award.

Other companies recognised for their outstanding and innovative products include: the Clevedon Buffalo Company, which won the Cuisine Artisan Award for its Garlic and Thyme Marinated Buffalo Cheese; 8 Wired Brewing Company, which won The Shout Alcoholic Beverage Award for its Cucumber Hippy; and NoShortcuts Ltd, which won the Countdown Grocery Foods Award for its Feijoa Kasundi.

The Apple Press picked up the Non-Alcoholic Beverages Award, in association with Food HQ for The Apple Press – Jazz; Picot Productions Ltd received the New Zealand Food Safety, Food Safety Culture Award; and PĀMU Landcorp Group Ltd won the Novel Food or Beverage Award, in association with ATEED and The FoodBowl, for PĀMU Deer Milk.

Savour Ltd’s Casheta Vegan Cheese won the Chilled/Short Shelf Life Award, in association with Eagle Protect.

Winning products are eligible to use the New Zealand Food Awards Quality Mark, domestically and internationally.

Photo galleries

Corporate Events Manager at Massey University Kelly Douglas said, “I just wanted to say a huge thank you for all of your help and support for making last night a success. I hope you all enjoyed it!

“I tried to get around to see everyone, but unfortunately I missed a few of you. We will be getting some dates in the diary for the near future to present the 2018 New Zealand food Awards review, and also to get together to celebrate a crazy but wonderful year.

“If you would like to see all the winners’ posts from last night, check out the NZ Food Awards Facebook page.

“We also had our photographers there last night, so please click here to re-live some of the great moments. We will be adding more to the album throughout the day, so keep your eyes peeled!”

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