NEW YORK — Pickled Brussels sprouts, mango sorbetto and pumpkin seed oil were among 28 food and beverage products recognized as the year’s top innovations in the $120.5 billion specialty food category.
Highlighted at the Summer Fancy Food Show, held June 26-28 in New York, the 2016 Specialty Food Association’s sofi (Specialty Outstanding Food Innovation) Award winners were selected from a record 3,200 entries across 28 product categories, including best chocolate, cheese and savory snack. Finalists were chosen by a national panel of chefs, culinary instructors, recipe developers, food journalists and specialty food buyers in a blind tasting.
“This year’s sofi Awards winners and finalists illustrate the vibrancy of the specialty food industry,” said Laura Santella-Saccone, chief marketing officer for the Specialty Food Association. “Each one reflects the passion and creativity Association members bring to the food they present to American and international food lovers.”
Creative Snacks Co., Greensboro, N.C., received the top award in the sweet snacks category for its Organic Coconut Snacks, featuring chia, sunflower and pumpkin seeds.
“Strong sales and great customer reactions told us we had a marketplace winner, so we entered our Organic Coconut Snacks into the 2016 sofi Awards to see what the most demanding taste-testers on the planet had to say,” said Marius Andersen, chief executive officer and founder of Creative Snacks Co. “The sofi Awards carry so much prestige because they maintain the very highest standards. We are truly honored to have our Organic Coconut Snacks recognized as the best sweet snack of the year by this distinguished panel of judges, and are inspired to continue creating snacks that are among the world’s best.”