Nominations are open for best Sussex Food and Drink

Paula Seager, Hilary Knight and Kate Howard, Natural Partnerships CIC
Paula Seager, Hilary Knight and Kate Howard, Natural Partnerships CIC

The Sussex Food and Drink Awards 2017 team are seeking the best Sussex street food vendors, new food businesses, farmers and young chefs.

Online nominations are set to close in just over a month on September 8. Nominations can be made online at www.sussexfoodawards.biz.

Paula Seager, co-director of Natural Partnerships CIC, who run the awards said, “Summer is here and we are urging people to get out and about and visit their local food shops, farmers markets, restaurants and foodie events to be inspired by our fantastic Sussex food and drink producers. We want to shout out to anyone who knows a superb farmer who does something extra special for Sussex food production; an ambitious and skillful young chef aged under 25; an exciting newcomer to the local food and drink industry; or an amazing street food vendor to nominate them in them at sussexfoodawards.biz by September 8 – without them on the list we may miss the food heroes out there who deserve to be recognised.”

As well as earning the huge respect and recognition that these awards now carry, winners and runners up in all ten categories will go on to receive their trophies on February 1, 2017 at a BAFTA-style ceremony hosted by patron to the awards Sally Gunnell OBE and Danny Pike from BBC Sussex.

The Sussex Newcomer of the Year category, co-sponsored by Spofforths and Sussex Food & Drink Network, will be looking for an innovative business from any part of the food and drink sector, supporting local produce, which has been trading for up to three years by the end of 2016; has the ambition and determination to succeed; and can demonstrate a realistic and sustainable business plan.

Adrian Pearce, partner at Spofforths, said: “It is vital that we support and encourage new business start ups in farming, food and drink production and across the retail and hospitality that supports local fare. We will be looking for the quality of the offer, need in the market place, unique selling points, areas of innovation and whether there is any recognition to upskill and/or undertake training.”

In the Sussex Farmer of the Year category, sponsored by Natural PR in association with Farmers Weekly, local farmers are recognised for the high quality food they produce and the positive impact they have in shaping the rural landscape in Sussex. Sussex farmers are making a difference to their communities by producing wonderful food or representing the county on a national level and the awards team is urging people to put names forward this year.

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