From high atop New York City, the Specialty Food Association announced the winners of the prestigious 2017 sofi™ (specialty outstanding food innovation) Awards.
The Specialty Food Association has been presenting sofi Awards since 1972, celebrating culinary excellence and creativity worldwide through recognizing the outstanding work of its members. The 2017 winners include a wide range of great foods, from mouthwatering sauces to delectable desserts to savory snacks. Winners were chosen from 3,000 entries in a blind tasting by a national panel of culinary experts.
In all, the 2017 sofi Awards honor 154 winners with Gold, Silver, Bronze, and Best New Product recognition in 39 categories. For a full list of winners, CLICK HERE.
This year, for the first time in the 45-year history of the awards, a sofi Product of the Year will be named. This award will be announced at the 2017 Summer Fancy Food Show in New York City in June.
"The 2017 sofi Award winners are the perfect representation of everything that the specialty food industry stands for," said Phil Kafarakis, president of the Specialty Food Association. Kafarakis was joined by food industry icon Sara Moulton to announce this year's winners from One World Observatory, atop One World Trade Center. "They represent the devotion to excellence, great tastes, and innovation that fuels our industry. Today's consumers are driving our growth across every channel: retail, e-commerce, foodservice. Wherever you find great food, chances are you're tasting a specialty food product."
Over 12 days in March 2017, a diverse panel of expert judges participated in a series of blind tastings to select the sofi winners. In all, 62 judges from across the food industry spectrum, including chefs, culinary instructors, recipe developers, food journalists, and specialty food buyers participated in the selection process.
"It was amazing to judge so many great tasting and innovative products," said Sara Moulton, legendary chef and host of "Sara's Weeknight Meals," "As a chef, I'm always looking for new ingredients and new inspiration. These products and the entrepreneurs behind them should be applauded for their creativity and vision. They are making mealtime more exciting for everyone."
The 2017 sofi Awards winners will be celebrated at the Specialty Food Association's Summer Fancy Food Show at the Javits Center in New York, June 25-27. The show is the largest marketplace for specialty food and beverages in North America. It will feature displays of all 2017 sofi Award winners, and unveil the biggest sofi Award of 2017—sofi Product of the Year.