Woolworths has named its top suppliers in its annual Supplier of the Year Awards, with popular yoghurt brand Chobani taking out the top gong and family-owned Mulgowie Farming Company recognised as Sustainability Supplier of the Year.
Chobani was awarded Overall Supplier of the Year, while also taking out the chilled category for its ongoing commitment to delighting customers and delivering market-leading new formats like its Gippsland Dairy Mix-ins.
Woolworths Chief Commercial Officer Paul Harker says: “Chobani isn’t afraid to do things differently, whether it be creating new formats to meet our customers’ changing needs, or problem solving to ensure reliable supply through the challenges of the pandemic. We’re proud to share a dedication to creating better experiences everyday with this leading brand.”
The Sustainability Supplier of the Year was awarded to Mulgowie Farming Company.
Hailing from Queensland’s Lockyer Valley, family-owned Mulgowie has partnered with Woolworths for almost 40 years, supplying sweet corn and green beans. This year it became the first vegetable grower in Australia to generate Carbon Inset Credits certified to the International Organisation for Standards requirements, according to Woolworths. The business was also awarded Fruit and Veg Supplier of the Year.
Mr Harker adds: “The Mulgowie team are true stewards of the land, planting the seeds for a better tomorrow. Not only are they lifting the bar for sustainable farming, but they’re also delivering quality fresh vegetables and more weather-resilient crops so our customers can enjoy their incredible produce year-round.”
The awards ceremony marked the 20th anniversary of Woolworths’ Supplier of the Year Awards, and included special recognition awards for those who have shaped categories and relationships over the last two decades.
Smallgoods supplier D’Orsogna took out two of these awards, recognised as a partner that has consistently worked with Woolworths to deliver quality deli products that meet the changing needs of customers over the years. The business was awarded 20-year Significant Contribution as both a company and for D’Orsogna Account Manager, Colin Sullivan – one of the longest serving current Woolworths account managers of any supplier.
Trade Partners owner Felice Testini was also awarded in the same category, having launched 28 products in Woolworths stores since 1999 and is renowned for “his passion and knack for bringing new products to the shelf.”
Mr Harker concludes: “Every week we serve millions of Australians in communities across the country, and none of it would be possible without the teamwork that takes place between our team and our suppliers.
“It’s the people behind these businesses, from growers to account managers, who work alongside us each day to deliver great products to our customers. Their dedication has persisted through the most challenging of situations, as we’ve seen over the pandemic.
“This year marks two decades of celebrating our suppliers – big and small – in this special annual event, and we’re proud to be championing those who’ve made an enduring impact on our business and truly represent what it means to be better together.
“Thank you to all our suppliers for your ongoing partnership and support in 2021 and beyond.”
The Woolworths Supplier of the Year Awards recognised partners across a range of categories:
- Overall Supplier of the Year: Chobani
- Chilled Supplier of the Year: Chobani
- Sustainability Supplier of the Year: Mulgowie Farming Company
- Fruit & Veg Supplier of the Year: Mulgowie Farming Company
- New Product Launch of the Year: Avalanche Bubble Tea
- Supply Partner of the Year: Allied Pinnacle
- Woolworths Food Company Supplier of the Year: PM Fresh Pty Ltd
- Meat/Seafood Supplier of the Year: Supafin Seafoods
- Grocery Food – Large Supplier of the Year: Gourmet Food
- Grocery Food – Small Supplier of the Year: Sealord
- Everyday Needs – Large Supplier of the Year: Reckitt Hygiene
- Everyday Needs – Small/Med Supplier of the Year: MCoBeauty
- Cartology Campaign of the Year: Dettol/Reckitt Health
- Account Manager of the Year: Matt Anderson (McCain)
- Woolworths Category Manager of the Year: Alok Vaidya (Cheese)
- Integrated Supply Partner of the Year: Oscar Leonor (Energizer).
To celebrate the contribution of key supply partners over the last two decades, the following awards recognised the long-term impact of brands, people and products:
- 20-Year Significant contribution – Company: D’Orsogna
- 20-Year Significant contribution – Account Manager: Colin Sullivan – D’Orsogna, Felice Testini – Trade Partners
- Category-changing Product of the Last 20 Years: Broccolini – Perfection Fresh.