21st Annual Awards Highlight Year's Standout Rookie Brands
TORONTO, April 11, 2014 /CNW/ - Which grocery products made the most
impressive debuts last year? Retail Council of Canada (RCC) announced
the finalists for the 21st annual Canadian Grand Prix New Product Awards.
The award program celebrates new products in 26 food, non-food and
private-label categories, as selected by a 32-member jury. Winners
will be announced at the Grand Prix Gala on June 4, 2014 at the Toronto
Congress Centre, as part of the STORE 2014 retail conference presented by RCC.
"Each finalist represents the collective efforts of product development,
design and brand management teams to inspire and delight consumers,"
says Diane J. Brisebois, President and CEO of RCC. "This program
recognizes and fosters the grocery industry's commitment to create
products that reflect the latest consumer preferences and trends."
The expert panel judging the awards comprises consumers, food
journalists, packaging designers and grocery industry R&D and marketing
personnel. Through a rigorous process, the jury grades each entry on
five criteria: uniqueness and innovation, product characteristics,
presentation and packaging, overall consumer value, and consumer
acceptance (household penetration rate of a product).
Longtime jury chair Marcus Von Albrecht says some of the food entries
demonstrated unique flavour combinations. Overall, he noted a focus on
healthier offerings. "We saw a lot of all natural, no preservatives -
simple food that tastes great," says Von Albrecht, President and COO of
He noticed simplicity too in the easy instructions and convenient
preparation of many of the food selections. "The consumer still has to
cook, but all the guessing is taken away," says Von Albrecht.
For the non-food items, judges use the same five criteria. "More
emphasis is put on the usefulness of the product," says Von Albrecht,
though he adds that some products made the cut for the sheer novelty.
"You would buy it simply because it's so different."
For their test kitchen, the jury evaluated the food and private label
products in March at the Institut de tourisme et d'hôtellerie du Québec
in Montreal. Judges assessed the non-food products in their own homes
over six weeks.
To become a finalist, a product must score of at least 70% in judging.
This year, 89 reached that mark. To make the judging as impartial as
possible, the panel once again assessed the taste, nutritional value
and price of food products "blind", before they saw the packaging and
the manufacturer's name.
To view the complete list of finalists visit: http://www.storeconference.ca/grandprix
This year's Canadian Grand Prix New Product Awards was open to
manufacturers and distributors of all sizes, for products introduced
during the 2013 calendar year. The finalists and winners can use the
Grand Prix Award logo on their packaging for two years.
About Retail Council of Canada (RCC)
Retail Council of Canada (www.retailcouncil.org) is the Voice of Retail. Founded in 1963, RCC is a not-for-profit
association which represents more than 45,000 stores of all retail
formats, including department, grocery, independent merchants, regional
and national specialty chains, and online merchants.
SOURCE: Retail Council of Canada
For further information:
Senior Marketing Manager
Retail Council of Canada
416-922-6678, ext. 241