Ritchies Supermarkets and Liquor Stores held its annual supplier conference in Port Douglas this week, celebrating the strong relationship between the independent retailer and its partners.
The event was held over five days at the Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort and was attended by more than 265 retailers, suppliers and their families.
The business sessions featured updates from the Ritchies team, including CEO Fred Harrison, Victorian State Manager Joe Fida, National Advertising and Promotions General Manager James Cameron and Liquor General Manager Karl Loh.
Attendees also heard from Australian futurist, author and technologist Steve Sammartino.
Celebrating supplier success
A highlight of the conference was the presentation of the 24th Annual Ritchies Supplier Awards.
Upon presenting each award, the buyer for each category spoke passionately about the deserving winner, highlighting their successes for the past year. The winners were also interviewed by Mr Harrison, allowing them to talk personally about their achievements.
The winners were:
- Dairy/Freezer Supplier of the Year: Fonterra
- Fresh Supplier of the Year: Baiada
- Best New Line (Liquor): Diageo –Game of Thrones Whiskeys
- Best New Line (Grocery): Arnott’s – Chocolate
- Non Food/GM Supplier of the Year: Unilever
- Services & Contractor Supplier of the Year: Baker Refrigeration
- Cigarette/Tobacco Supplier of the Year: Philip Morris International
- Liquor Supplier of the Year (under $2.5m sales): Brown Family Wine Group
- Liquor Supplier of the Year (over $2.5m sales): DeBorteli Family Winemakers
- Grocery Supplier of the Year (under $2.5m sales): Soulfresh
- Grocery Supplier of the Year (over $2.5m sales): Nestlé
150 years approaches
2020 will mark the 150th anniversary of Ritchies Stores. Mr Harrison believes this will make Ritchies the longest serving supermarkets group in Australia.
The anniversary will be celebrated with Ritchies biggest ever spend on an event as the retailer invests acknowledging the heritage and achievements of its team and partners throughout the year.
More details on the conference and Ritchies’ 2020 plans to follow in an upcoming issue of Retail World.