Food and Beverage Industry Award winners

Posted by Daniel Palmer on 20th November 2008

One of Western Australia’s oldest companies and most recognised brands, Anchor Foods, has received recognition as the overall winner of the inaugural Westpac Food and Beverage Industry Awards, organised by the Food Industry Association of WA (FIA).

The Fremantle-based company, which reinvented itself after being returned to Western Australian ownership two years ago, was awarded the Westpac Best Business Award,
as well as winning the Innovation Category Award for its Lighthouse Special Purpose Flours.

Anchor Foods was also a finalist in one other award category at the gala presentation dinner attended by 400 guests at the Burswood Convention Centre last Friday.

Anchor was established 154 years ago and, following its change of ownership in 2006, increased sales by more than 250 per cent to over $35 million in 2007/08. The increases followed the repackaging and launch of more than 450 of its products. The Anchor brand is one of Australia’s oldest trademarks and the company provides direct and indirect employment for over 460 Western Australians.

The FIA award capped off a great month for the company and its Lighthouse Flour range, with the company also receiving the Marketing and Design Excellence Award in the Western Australian Industry and Export Awards.

WA family-owned Casa Dairy Products won the Best Retail Product category for its Smoothe Probiotic Drinks. These new products were launched at the Perth Royal Show this year, and come in four flavours, are 97 per cent fat free, and are full of healthy probiotic cultures.

Mundella Foods, another family-owned Perth business, which re launched itself as “Your Probiotic Company” won the Best Marketing Campaign award for this campaign. Mundella Foods recorded double-digit growth in WA for its dairy products.

The Export Category Winner was Perth-based Safeguard Innovations for its Safeguard Fruit and Veggie Wash, a natural and biodegradable product which removes potential chemical contamination.

Albany Farmers Markets received recognition via the Best Service to Industry Award for offering close to 40 local businesses a direct sales channel to consumers every Saturday since 2002, providing the best food and beverages the Great Southern has to offer.

The Best Food Service prize went to Freshcorp, an innovative Perth fruit and vegetable wholesaler which supplies more than 500 individual fresh fruits and vegetables to the hospitality industry.

The Craig Mostyn Group, WA’s largest processor of fresh pork and a major exporter to Asia and the United States, took out the award in the Environment and Sustainability category.

FIA Chief Executive Officer Andrea Berteit said the Association had been overwhelmed by the number of companies which nominated for the inaugural awards. “We received over 100 entries from almost 50 companies operating in WA ranging from large multinationals to regional companies supplying niche products and services,” she reported. “The achievements of these companies is indicative of just what our WA industry can offer to consumers and the WA community, and the importance of creating value beyond the farm gate.”

“We are delighted with the success of the awards program, which will be held on an annual basis,” Ms Berteit advised.

The Association, which was launched in November last year and is the State’s peak food and beverage industry body, is dedicated to helping the State’s 950-plus food and beverage manufacturers increase their sales over the next decade beyond the current level of $5.5 billion. In addition to the major sponsor Westpac, this year’s Food and Beverage Industry award categories were proudly sponsored by IGA, Rabobank, Australia Post, Clear-Tech, Alinta, Burswood and the Department of Agriculture and Food.