Victorian Premier, Steve Bracks recently announced the winners of the 2005 Premier’s Food Victoria Awards.
The Awards recognise companies that are significant participants and leaders within the Victorian food industry.
Winners of the Awards will receive sponsorship to the value of $1,000 for a staff member to attend a workshop, conference or training seminar of their choice.
Entrants are not only assessed by an independent judging panel, but they also must clear background checks for workplace health and safety, financial stability, environmental responsibility and food safety.’
Bracks said some of the notable achievements included the success of Simplot Australia Pty Ltd, who have won a Premier’s Food Victoria Award for the second year in a row.
The Awards are funded by Food Victoria and sponsored by WorkSafe Victoria .
Presentations to the following companies were made:
The Export Award was presented to The Old Colonial Cookie Company (Lilydale) for their work in developing export markets for their Butterfingers Shortbread and Lander’s Australia biscuit range.
In 2002, The Old Colonial Cookie Company chose to expand its export program.
Already successfully distributing to Japan, the company began exploring new opportunities.
Undergoing significant research to identify appropriate target markets, the company overcame significant barriers to establish new overseas markets.
The Marketing Award was presented to Simplot Australia Pty Ltd (Cheltenham) for their work in developing I & J Toasties - hot snacks, designed to be toasted in a sandwich press, served fresh within minutes, providing handling convenience and hygiene.
The I&J Toasties range was developed as a direct response to significant concerns regarding obesity in school children, plus the need to meet stringent nutrition requirements for a reduction in the energy density, fat and sodium content of snack foods for school canteens.
The Innovation Award was presented to O-Zo Fresh Processing for their work in developing Quickfresh Asparagus - fresh cut asparagus packaged in a breathable, microwave safe container which provides longer shelf life.
Innovative processing techniques deliver farm freshness to the plate.
Asparagus is harvested, sanitized and processed on site, providing a revolution in the fresh cut asparagus industry.
The process also reduces wastage and shrinkage.
Judges noted that asparagus can be a particularly difficult vegetable to work with because of it’s vulnerability to light strike when compared to other vegetables.