Healthy fare shines in SA Premier’s Food Awards

Posted by Josette Dunn on 8th November 2010

Multi-grain crackers, organically grown capers and gluten-free chutney were some of the healthy winners at the Premier’s Food Industry Awards on Friday night.Kangaroo Island Pure Grains, Spring Gully Foods, Olga’s Fine Foods, Udder Delights, Seafood Exporters Australia, AMJ Produce and Bickford’s Australia took out their categories in a high-quality year for South Australian food businesses.

Australian Caper Company was a dual winner, being awarded for both their innovation and sustainability with their range of value-added capers, which compete successfully with imports and grow well in dry conditions.

Premier Mike Rann announced the 12 winners on Friday evening at a gala presentation dinner.

“The State’s food industry is a huge and important part of our economic development. In the past financial year, the industry contributed record revenue of $12.4 billion to our economy.

“This included $3.5 billion in production value to the farm sector, with the value of finished food turnover reaching $4.6 billion.

“The range of health-oriented, value-added products among this year’s winners demonstrates that South Australian businesses are creating leading-edge products which consumers are demanding – which has been a key factor to the food industry’s ongoing growth,” Mr Rann said.

Also announced on the night was the 2010 South Australian Hall of Fame inductee, Beerenberg, an iconic family-owned business at Hahndorf creating home-style preserves, jams, condiments and sauces.

“Beerenberg is a very deserving induction into the Hall of Fame,” Mr Rann said.

“Beerenberg has led the way with innovative products, portion sizes and more recently with food traceability systems through their providence pathway.

“They also exemplify the characteristics of ongoing success and make a significant and sustainable contribution to South Australia’s food industry.”

The Premier also recognised individuals, 35-year-old Sam Tucker, managing director of Tucker’s Natural; and Tas Mitani, managing director of Mitani Products, as winners of the Innovate SA Visionary Leader Awards.

“Sam is a passionate advocate for South Australian food and the industry and actively works to raise the profile, create change and assist other businesses grow,” Mr Rann said.

“Tas has been contributing to the development of industry for more than 40 years, proving his dedication to helping local businesses.

“The awards continue to demonstrate that the food industry in South Australia is innovative and growing, with diverse businesses and products gaining markets overseas and within Australia.”