The Retail Council of Canada (RCC) has revealed the finalists for the 28th Annual Canadian Grand Prix New Product Awards.
The finalists represent the 124 most impressive new food and consumer packaged goods products launched into the Canadian market in 2020. Submissions include established companies as well as new suppliers, smaller boutiques, and family-owned retailers across Canada.
“Canadians spent more time at home in 2020 than ever in recent memory,” said Diane J. Brisebois, President and CEO, Retail Council of Canada. “Canadians are craving products to prepare at home that satisfy their needs for flavour adventures. They are looking for new taste experiences from dishes made with high-quality ingredients and that can appeal to various taste preferences.”
“I am fascinated each year with how the finalist products reflect the changing interests of Canadians,” said Marcus A. von Albrecht, chef and jury chair who has overseen the Canadian Grand Prix New Product Awards judging for 22 years. “The plant-based category continues to grow. We are also seeing incredible development in superior quality vegan cheese products and decadence in Italian meat trays, dairy cheeses, and desserts. Packaging is also evolving with simpler design and clear covers, reflecting consumers’ growing desire to visually see food products before buying them.”
This year’s jury of 33 food and grocery industry experts evaluated products based on innovation, taste, texture, consumer value, and packaging.
The rigorous evaluation process requires that to become a finalist, a product must receive an overall score of at least 70 per cent. Jurors review food and non-food products in the four categories of innovation and originality, product characteristics, presentation and packaging, and overall consumer value.
Finalists can use the prestigious Canadian Grand Prix New Product Award finalist seal on their products. Finalists also receive extensive exposure in a variety of digital and printed publications, distributed to Canadians across the country.
This year, Retail Council of Canada, in consultation with the Canadian Black Chamber of Commerce, created a new specialty award to recognize excellence in ethnic products in recognition of Canadians’ appetite for a more diverse palette of products and emerging brands. The Excellence in Ethnic Products Award will be presented to a product that impresses the jury, aligns to consumers’ needs and demonstrates ethnic origins of the ingredients or method of manufacturing.
The winners of the 28th Annual Canadian Grand Prix will be announced June 3, 2021.