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  • Hugo Walker

Food Manufacturing Awards 2024 celebrates food business, collaboration and innovation

Arla bags a record three awards, while BioPak, Wyke Farms, Fuel Hub and more receive accolades

The Food Manufacturer Excellence Awards 2024 took place in the London Hilton Bankside this month to celebrate the front runners in the food and beverage industry. Awards representing a wide range of qualities, including business acumen, collaboration, innovation, integrity and good employment were up for grabs. 

Food Manufacturing Company of the Year went to Arla Foods, which also snagged Employer of the Year and ESG Excellence. The judges lauded Arla’s commitment to employee safety and wellbeing, sustainability and innovation. 

The Community Award went to Fudge Kitchen (and its partnership with fundraising tech firms B1G1 and WorkForGood). Fudge Kitchen’s small team raises around £15,000 a year for charity, as well as investing in community projects and rewilding the local environment. B1G1 is a platform that integrates fundraising into business plans, allowing companies to seamlessly and measurably raise money in a way that aligns with their strengths. WorkForGood makes fundraising easy by dealing with the legal aspect of donations through digital solutions. 

Meanwhile, BioPak won the Innovation Award for its pioneering compostable packaging and utensils such as coffee cups and containers. Fuel Hub’s production facility — the meal prep company providing clean meals for athletes — bagged the Site Team Award for its efficient and knowledgeable staff working at its zero-waste food production site. 

Bethan Grylls, chair of the judging panel, said that the judging process had been tweaked slightly to give more weight to the industry’s people and personalities. “The calibre of both the paper entries and interviews were exceptional, and it goes to show how incredible our food and drink sector is as the world continues to grapple with numerous challenges,” she said.

“It was an honour to judge alongside such an illustrious panel of industry experts, which included both FMEA veterans and fresh faces alike,” Grylls continued. “Of course, it’s never easy picking the winners for the awards and every finalist should be giving themselves a well-deserved pat on the back.”

Here’s the full list of winners:

  • Food Manufacturing Company of the Year - Arla Foods

  • Business Leader of the Year - Andrew Heston (Bumble Hole Foods)

  • Collaboration and Partnership - Nestle & First Milk

  • Emerging Business - Little Bobby Jebb Foods

  • Employer of the Year - Arla Foods

  • ESG Excellence - Arla Foods

  • Factory Manager of the Year - Kate Clawson (Sleaford Quality Foods)

  • Food Integrity - Dunbia

  • Future Talent - Mollie Harvey (Lincoln & York)

  • International Trade - Wyke Farms

  • Site Team of the Year - Fuel Hub production facility

  • Supply Chain Excellence - The Collective Dairy

  • Community - Work For Good & B1G1 – Fudge Kitchen

  • Innovation - BioPak


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