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Outstanding Talent from Northern England Recognised in Food and Drink Federation Awards Shortlist

16 August 2016

Outstanding Talent from Northern England Recognised in Food and Drink Federation Awards Shortlist

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Food businesses from Pontefract, Malton, Middleton on the Wolds, and Driffield are competing for the Regional Growth Business Award in the industry-leading Food and Drink Federation Awards. The shortlisted companies represent the best of Northern England, emphasising the quality of food and drink manufacturing present right across the region.

  • Dunhills (Pontefract) is based in the well-known home of liquorice in West Yorkshire and operates in the confectionery market manufacturing, distributing and marketing products under the brand names HARIBO and MAOAM. The company has consistently outperformed the market and has succeeded in delivering strong sales growth year on year. In order to support continued growth and accommodate the organisation's vision for the future, the business has invested significantly in a new, purpose built factory.
  • Karro Food Group is a relatively new business, built on longstanding foundations, based in Malton, North Yorkshire. It was launched as a privately owned company in January 2013 following the purchase of Vion Food Group's UK pork division by private equity company Endless. It is one of the UK's leading suppliers of pork products to the retail, foodservice and export markets. Employing over 3,000 people, Karro has eight divisions in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
  • T Soanes and Son was founded as a farm-based business by Tom Soanes in 1948. The family owned business has been rearing and preparing poultry in Middleton on the Wolds in East Yorkshire for over 65 years and prides itself on its personal service to customers. They rear over five million birds per year on their 11 farms and sell their premium chicken to butchers, restaurateurs and independent retailers in Yorkshire and to wholesalers nationwide.
  • The Yorkshire Wagyu Company is based near Driffield on the Wolds in East Yorkshire. It started trading in 2014 after farmers Jim Bloom and Jonathan Shepherd spent two years establishing one of the biggest Wagyu cross and Wagyu full-blood herds in the UK. Capitalising on the increasing consumer demand for new and different beef with known provenance, they set up The Yorkshire Wagyu Company to market super premium beef direct to the public after several years servicing contracts to a multiple retailer.

The Food and Drink Federation Awards 2016 will showcase and celebrate the best of food and drink businesses from right across the UK. Finalists will gather together with their peers and colleagues on 22 September 2016 for a gala evening at The Brewery, London to recognise the industry's achievements and to hear which finalists have been successful.

As well as acting as a platform for the industry, the evening – which will be hosted by broadcaster and presenter Hardeep Singh Kohli – will enable guests to come together and discover more about the many innovations underway in food and drink in the UK.

Trefor Griffith, Head of Food and Beverage at category sponsors Grant Thornton UK LLP commented: “Grant Thornton are delighted to once again be supporting the Growth Business category for this year's Food and Drink Federation Awards. As a firm, we're committed to helping dynamic businesses unlock their potential for growth. Food and beverage is a key industry for us and as the largest manufacturing sector in the UK, it's great to see these businesses recognised.”

Ian Wright, Director General, FDF, said: “We value the importance and contribution of our regional growth businesses within the food and drink industry and are proud to support and foster the brand names of tomorrow as they establish and develop. Central England contains some outstanding growing businesses and it is a real pleasure to see such a diverse range of food and drink represented in the shortlist. I would like to say thank you to our sponsor, entrants and judges for their efforts.

“We look forward to welcoming the finalists, guests and supporters to an evening that we are sure will be a wonderful showcase for our industry's strength, expertise and endless creativity.”

Secure your place at this year's event registration online

More information

Contact the FDF press office via or via 0207 420 7131/20/18

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Distribution channels: Food & Beverages