What does food and beverage innovation have in common with The Olympic Winter Games? Perhaps more than first meets the eye.

Like so many competing food and beverage companies displayed on shelf, you have national athletic teams on display at the opening “parade of nations” and in team competitions such as ice hockey. Then think about how your company has individual experts skilled in marketing, consumer insights, culinary arts, food science and package design and engineering. So too, the US Olympic team has specialists in ice skating, downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, luge, snowboarding and, everyone’s favorite: curling. 

In the end, all individuals hope to excel and be recognized for hard work and dedication. Likewise, competitive countries and companies also strive to celebrate team victories. 

There’s no better way to introduce Prepared Foods’ upcoming 16th annual Spirit of Innovation Awards. These distinctive awards recognize new foods and beverages in retail, foodservice and alternative channels. Moreover, what makes these awards unique is that Prepared Foods’ judges its winners, in part, not only on your new product’s success but the stories of your behind-the-scenes teamwork.

Today’s R&D is a team sport and we exist to serve all members of the product development process—from consumer insights and ideation all the way through product and package development. It involves insights and efforts from corporate chefs, marketers, food scientists, package designers, nutritionists and others. Along with your product details, we value your stories about team members identifying an unmet market opportunity and how they addressed it; or about how a cross-functional team overcame issues related to formulation or new-to-the world packaging. 

There’s no charge to enter Prepared Foods’ Spirit of Innovation competition. Just go to preparedfoods.com/spirit-of-innovation-awards and fill out an entry form. You’ll also learn more about past honorees—including 2016-2017 winners included Taco Bell and Tyson Foods, Pinnacle Foods, Nestlé Foods Division, DannonWave, Jennie-O Turkey, Johnsonville Foods and Bona Fide Brewing Company. 

We look forward to learning about your new product efforts and adding your name to this distinguished list!

Spirit of Innovation Awards Categories*

Best New Retail Product / Food

Best New Retail Product / Beverage

Best New Foodservice Product / Front of House (addressing consumer trends)

Best New Foodservice Product / Back of House (addressing operator needs)

Best New Product / Alternative Channel (In-Store Deli/Bakery, C-Store)

*Open to products introduced January 2017-March 2018. Winning products, companies recognized at Prepared Foods’ New Products Conference Sept. 30-Oct. 3, 2018, in Minneapolis.


Tell Us Your New Product Story!

* Teamwork to address opportunity, solve a problem?

* Sales Success?

* Why distinct in the market?

* New-to-the-world product concept, design, package?

Visit preparedfoods.com/spirit-of-innovation-awards for free online entry form! Entry deadline is April 30, 2018.