THERE was good news for County Wexford businesses in this years Good Food Ireland awards with eight being shortlisted as finalists.
The winners will be revealed at a high profile business lunch that will take place at the K Club in Co Kildare, on Monday, April 17.
The eight Wexford businesses in the running for the prestigious awards include:
Café Of The Year – The Hungry Bear Café / Kelly's Café; Food Truck Of The Year – Seabiscuit at The Strand, Cahore; Sustainability Award – Atlantis, Kilmore Quay; Producer Of The Year (Fruit and Vegetables) – Kearns Fruit Farm; Producer Of The Year (Fish and Seafood) – Atlantis, Kilmore Quay; Producer Of The Year (Drinks) – Jackford Irish Gin; Producer Of The Year (Dairy) – Killowen Farm, and Producer Of The Year (Jams & Savoury) – Wexford Home Preserves.
The Good Food Ireland Awards adopts a cross-sector approach and celebrates the successful collaboration of agri-food and tourism initiatives working together for inclusive economic growth.
A spokesperson for Good Food Ireland said each award will be underpinned by premium quality, exceptional achievement, innovation, agility and resilience, together with a core commitment to local Irish provenance, community, sustainability and a culture where all can flourish.
The shortlisted nominee finalists were chosen by an independent panel of Irish and International leaders including: founder and Managing Director of Good Food Ireland, Margaret Jeffares; journalists, John Wilson and Amii McKeever; IFAC consultant, Stephanie Walsh, and executive chairman and owner of Odyssey International, Kevin Shannon. The finalists were chosen following onsite inspection and meeting strict criteria and the panel will select the overall winner following mystery inspections and assessments.
The general public also has an opportunity cast votes for their favourite places throughout Ireland in the Food Lovers Choice Award.
Online voting is now open and will remain ongoing until Monday, March 20. Other awards of recognition will include Outstanding Contribution to Food Production, Outstanding Contribution to Irish Food/Drink Internationally and Lifetime Achievement Award.
The awards ceremony will be opened by Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Simon Coveney TD, and will be attended by around 300 guests including business owners, Irish and international chefs, buyers, food and drink writers, media and industry leaders.
The keynote speech at the event will be delivered by Anita Mendiratta, Special Advisor to the Secretary General of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation.
Commenting on the awards, Margaret Jeffares, founder and managing director of Good Food Ireland, said there is a lot of excitement around the return of the awards following the forced hiatus caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“All of those wonderful businesses who have made the shortlist are a committed collection of passionate and driven people who genuinely capture the essence of Ireland's food and drink, setting it in a cultural context to inspire travellers, international consumers and locals to seek out real authenticity and Irish provenance,” she said.
For full details on the individual awards, tickets to the event, and general information about Good Food Ireland® visit www.goodfoodireland.ie