Nine standout food specialists from Edinburgh and the Lothians have been announced as finalists for the Scotland Food & Drink Excellence Awards 2019.
Spanning 11 categories, businesses from across the food production spectrum have made the cut from the international scale of the Scottish Salmon Company, who have been shortlisted for three awards, to smaller artisanal firms such as Leith-based East Coast Cured who have three of their continental style Scottish cured meat up for an award, including their whisky oak smoked nudja, fennel salami and porcini & truffle salami.
In the confectionery, drinks & snacking category, sparkling tea distillers Left Field Kombucha’s Oolong Kombucha Tea have been shortlisted alongside, The Drinks Bakery, for two products – Lancashire cheese & spring onion biscuits and mature cheddar, smoked chilli & almond biscuits.
Cottage cheese from Yester Farm Dairies and Campbells & Co Smokehouse Ltd’s beetroot & dill smoked salmon made it in the dairy and fish categories.
Up for Scotch product of the year is the Buccleuch Scotch Beef PGI Dry Bone in Sharing Rib Chop from Campbell Brothers, as well as Lind & Lime Gin from the Port of Leith Distillery and mango and chilli chutney from The Spice Witch in East Lothian.
They judged alongside 43 other businesses from across Scotland.
Winners from all 19 categories will be announced in front of 800 guests at the prestigious awards ceremony and dinner on Thursday, 23 May 2019 at the Corn Exchange.
Showcasing innovation, enterprise and above all else, excellence, in the Scottish food and drink scene, the national finalists also include: Mackie’s of Scotland, Graham’s the Family Dairy, Bidfood Scotland, Brakes Scotland, Aldi, Lidl, and The Three Chimneys.
James Withers, Chief Executive of Scotland Food & Drink, said: “Every year the Excellence Awards attracts an incredibly diverse range of entrants, all of which are of a very high quality.
“This year we’ve had a record number of entries and the standard has never been higher.
“While tasting each of the products entered into the awards sounds like a dream, in reality, selecting the very best of the best has been extremely difficult for our expert judging panel.
“Now celebrating its 20th year, the Awards will yet again be the premier night in one of Scotland’s most valuable and successful industries. Congratulations and good luck to all the finalists.”
The Excellence Awards has been restructured for 2019 to focus on the standout products driving value and consumer choice in the market in line with the overarching Ambition 2030 strategy to double the value of the industry.
Kevin McBride, Vice President for Scotland at Asda, added: “Asda is proud to support the Scotland Food & Drink Excellence Awards for the 20th year running and help to celebrate the exceptional quality and innovation in Scotland’s thriving food and drink industry.
“At Asda, we recognise the importance of Scottish sourcing for our customers and our suppliers, and the Awards are an opportunity to showcase the talented individuals and businesses who are driving this national success story.”
Tickets for the awards ceremony and dinner are available from Scotland Food & Drink priced at £125+VAT for Scotland Food & Drink members or £250+VAT for non-members.