Chance to vote for region's best food producer and store
- Credit: Gregg Brown
Shortlists have been revealed for two regional awards to recognise food producers and stores for going the extra mile during the coronavirus crisis.
East of England Co-op has today launched its Sourced Locally Awards with customers able to vote for Producer of the Year and Store of the Year 2021 in recognition of local suppliers’ incredible efforts to keep baskets full despite unprecedented challenges.
The awards form part of the community retailer’s annual Sourced Locally Fortnight campaign (June 21-July 4).
Normally the winners are selected by external judges and customer votes. However, due to the pandemic and the monumental challenges it created for local producers and colleagues, the East of England Co-op has decided to run this year’s awards differently.
This year, the winners will be decided exclusively by public votes, providing an opportunity for the retailer's customers to recognise those producers and store colleagues who have gone above and beyond for the region during the crisis.
Voting opens online here today and closes on July 25.
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East of England Co-op joint chief executive Roger Grosvenor said: “Our Sourced Locally Awards are a wonderful way to celebrate the hard work, huge passion and outstanding commitment of our local producers and store colleagues all year round to provide our customers with the highest quality food and drink.
“This year’s awards are even more special, in that they come after a year of extreme difficulty, both for our customers, colleagues and our local producers – who have faced unprecedented demand compounded by immense logistical challenges.
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“Our finalists have gone above and beyond, showed that they care, worked around the clock, and come up with innovative solutions at lightning speed to ensure shoppers didn’t go without. I encourage all our customers to vote – they are all such worthy winners, and we cannot thank them enough for supporting communities through these extraordinary times.”
The six Producer of the Year finalists are:
- Havensfield Eggs
- W & H Marriage & Sons Ltd
- Rymer Farm
- The Taste of Suffolk
- Wicks Manor
The six Store of the Year finalists are:
- Costessey, Norfolk
- Framlingham, Suffolk
- Woodbridge, Suffolk
- Lavenham, Suffolk
- Manningtree, Essex
- Sible Hedingham, Essex