Henderson Wholesale set to award its top NI suppliers

The judging panel of the Henderson Wholesale Local Supplier of the Year awards (from left) Professor Chris Elliott, Professor of Food Safety and Director of the Institute for Global Food Security at Queen's University; agriculture journalist Richard Wright; UTV business editor Jamie Delargy and Freda Magill, UFU Rural Affairs Committee Chairperson with Nigel Dugan, Fresh Foods Trading Controller, Henderson Wholesale.
The judging panel of the Henderson Wholesale Local Supplier of the Year awards (from left) Professor Chris Elliott, Professor of Food Safety and Director of the Institute for Global Food Security at Queen's University; agriculture journalist Richard Wright; UTV business editor Jamie Delargy and Freda Magill, UFU Rural Affairs Committee Chairperson with Nigel Dugan, Fresh Foods Trading Controller, Henderson Wholesale.
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Eleven local companies have been shortlisted for the Henderson Wholesale’s Local Supplier of the Year awards, the winners of which will be awarded at the Balmoral Show next week.

Henderson Wholesale, owners of the SPAR and EUROSPAR franchises in Northern Ireland, runs the awards scheme, now in its third year, to mark the excellent produce, practices and ranges of the companies it works with.

As a platinum sponsor of the three day event, the SPAR brand has a key presence at the Balmoral Show, further strengthening its links with the agri-food industry and encouraging its customers to enjoy the best of local produce.

The judging panel of the Local Supplier of the Year awards, included Professor Chris Elliott, Professor of Food Safety and Director of the Institute for Global Food Security at Queen’s University; Freda Magill, UFU Rural Affairs Committee Chairperson; UTV business editor Jamie Delargy and agriculture journalist Richard Wright.

This year entries were made across five categories from suppliers of all sizes and types and across Northern Ireland. Categories include Enjoy Local Supplier of the Year, CSR focused Tomorrow Matters, Best Direct to Store Supplier, Brand Innovation Award and Overall Local Supplier of the Year.

Irwin’s Bakery, Allied Bakeries, Mash Direct, Avondale Foods, Doherty & Gray and Willowbrook Foods have all been shortlisted in more than one category.

Neal Kelly, Henderson Wholesale’s Fresh Food Director, said: “The Balmoral Show is one of the most important events for the agri-community in Northern Ireland each year and, for us, it’s a great time to show our support for local farmers and suppliers and to highlight our focus on bringing the best fresh, local, traceable food to our shoppers.

“This year we’ve extended the number of categories in our Local Supplier Awards, and have seen a huge increase in the quality and quantity of entries from our suppliers.

“We’re thrilled to have on board such a prestigious and experienced judging panel with top-level expertise in food safety, agriculture and business.

“We look forward to welcoming all those shortlisted and announcing the winners at our special breakfast event at the Balmoral Show.”

Other highlights at the Show include the SPAR enjoy local marquee where visitors can get involved in a host of family fun and taste a selection of SPAR’s new fresh own brand range, which celebrates the finest farmers, growers and producers in Northern Ireland.

The SPAR arena, a new addition to Balmoral this year, will host an array of entertainment throughout the Show’s three days. Finally, visitors to the Show can also pick up sandwiches, coffees and sweet treats from the fully functioning SPAR store that will sit prominently at the corner of Park Central West and Barbour Avenue.

Shortlist for Henderson Wholesale Local Supplier Awards:

Enjoy Local Supplier of the Year

o Allied Bakeries

o Avondale Foods

o Fred C Robinson

o Willowbrook Foods

Tomorrow Matters Award

o Irwin’s Bakery

o Mash Direct

o Moy Park

Best Direct to Store Supplier Award

o Irwin’s Bakery

o Allied Bakeries

o Doherty & Gray

Brand Innovation Award

o Irwin’s Bakery

o Around Noon

o Mash Direct

Local Supplier of the Year

o Karro Cookstown

o Doherty & Gray

o Willowbrook Foods

o Daily Bake

o Avondale Foods