Our sponsors not only fund and help judge these awards, but they are totally involved and committed to them – we simply couldn’t manage the awards without them and we want to say thank you …
Select a logo to view more information about our sponsors.
Sussex Food Producer of the Year
Sponsored by Southern Co-op, Simon Eastwood, Chief Operating Officer of Retail
As an independent regional retailer, it is vital that we support our local economy in the areas in which we trade. We champion local producers and suppliers across our estate, from Kent to Devon, and we now have a local offer in around 80% of our stores.
We are proud to continue our sponsorship of the Sussex Food and Drink Awards; they give us the opportunity to get out into Sussex and meet innovative, artisan and passionate people… and try some wonderfully tasty fare too! Since we started sponsoring the awards we have gone on to work with several of the businesses we have met so it is not simply the winners who benefit from the awards. The Sussex Food & Drink Awards are a celebration of Sussex produce at its absolute best.
Sussex Newcomer of the Year
Sponsored by SRC-Time Accounting and Taxation, Lead Judge Michael Riazi.
It is vital that we support and encourage new business start-ups in farming, food and drink production and across retail and hospitality that support local fare.
SRC-Time prides itself in delivering and providing a service designed to support both upcoming and established businesses. We were delighted to sponsor the newcomer category as we feel we are well placed to help start-ups and fledgling companies looking for new ideas and guidance in all things financial. We have a wealth of experience within our team and we are here to help each and every business achieve its potential.
We are really looking forward to getting thoroughly immersed in this important category for the first year!
Sussex Butcher of the Year
Sponsored by R P Meats Wholesale Ltd. Lead Judge Greg Thatcher, Director
As quality meat suppliers, we at RP Meats are excited to be a part of this prestigious and established award category. We source our meat locally and provide it to great butchers who are the face of the industry; it’s important that they are recognised for the work they put into making quality food accessible alongside great customer service.
Sussex Young Chef of the Year
Sponsored by Blakes Foods, Lead Judge Adrian Burr, Director
As quality meat suppliers, we at Blakes Foods are thrilled to be a part of this prestigious and established award category. We source our meat locally and provide it to so many fantastic eateries in the county; we can’t wait to see what is created with it by the great chefs out there. We feel it’s vital to recognise the talent of Sussex young chefs who really understand working with seasonal fare and who can produce something superb with it and very much look forward to the cook off to see what our top young talent can do!
Sussex Farmers Market of the Year
Sponsored by Miles Jenner, Joint Managing Director of Harvey’s brewery in Lewes.
I have long been passionate about the wonderful produce in our county and it makes such perfect sense to encourage people to buy what is grown on their doorstep. Farmers markets are a great showcase for local produce and often provide the first step for farmers and producers to sell their wares directly to local customers.
For over two centuries the name of ‘Harvey’ has been associated with the supply of the finest wines and beers throughout Sussex. Harvey and Son (Lewes) Ltd remains a privately owned family business (now in its seventh generation). Our proud traditions for the craft of brewing and the quality of our drink supplies have been augmented by the highest values of customer service.
Moreover, today the brewery has become something of a Sussex icon representing stability and integrity. Harvey’s is also delighted to be acknowledged equally for its local identity, environmental credentials, sympathetic architectural developments and local charitable activities.
Young Sussex Farmer of the Year
Sponsored by The South of England Agricultural Society, lead representative Iain Nicol, CEO.
We are absolutely delighted to be sponsoring this award. The food and farming sector employs 3.5 million people in the UK and The South of England Agricultural Society is here to help promote and support innovation in food, growing and all aspects of the countryside and, in the process to attract young people into seriously considering a career in agriculture, viticulture and other land-based industries.
The Society plays a significant role in introducing young people to the countryside and is committed to the on-going support of young people in the agricultural industries through our shows, events, competitions, bursaries and scholarships.
We can’t wait to meet the entrants and help showcase their successes!
Special thanks to our two volunteer judges, David Lamb from Plumpton College and Richard Butterfield from Brinsbury Campus at Chichester College.
Sussex Street Food of the Year
Sponsored by Horsham District Foodies, Lead Judge Councillor Kate Rowbottom, Deputy Chairman of Horsham District Council
We are very happy to support the Sussex Food Awards for the fourth year running. Horsham is fortunate to have an abundance of artisan food and drink producers in the District and this event is very successful in promoting them to the general public. Long may it continue!
Sussex Drink Producer of the Year
Sponsored by Natural PR, as explained by Managing Director Paula Seager
I am passionate about local produce and launched these awards thirteen years ago to help boost the local market for Sussex produce. Now the market has grown enormously and local food and drink is more fashionable than ever, but we can’t be complacent and our work to promote our fantastic Sussex produce and help grow consumers’ awareness of the provenance of their food and drink, as well as the hard work that goes into creating it, must continue.
Natural PR is a team of strategic public relations experts who can help you to communicate naturally in the language and style your business or consumer audience understands and responds to positively. We provide PR services to businesses large and small, public and private, consumer-facing and business to business, usually based in or active in the South East.
Sussex Food Shop of the Year
Sponsored by Hilary Knight from the Sussex Food & Drink Network.
People have been living and working in the beautiful and diverse landscape of the South Downs for thousands of years. The land has been farmed and cultivated for hundreds of generations. Supporting local food and drink producers and suppliers is essential if we are to continue to enjoy the landscape and the beautiful scenery we have on our doorstep.
The Sussex Food and Drink Awards provides an opportunity to reward local businesses and celebrate excellence in terms of produce, quality, innovation and customer service. This is key to ensuring a healthy rural economy which supports the landscape, community and its visitors.
The Sussex Food and Drink Network is an independent network for Local Food and Drink Producers, Retailers, Wholesalers and Hospitality Providers with a common interest in local sourcing and the local supply chain. Our aim is to inform, educate and promote the benefits of supporting our vibrant local food and drink producers for the local economy and environment.
Sussex Eating Experience of the Year
Sponsored by Natural Partnerships, Paula Seager and Hilary Knight, co-directors
As organisers of these awards, we are delighted to be sponsoring the Sussex Eating Experience of the Year category.
Natural Partnerships Community Interest Company (CIC) is a not-for-profit organisation, co-directed by Hilary Knight and Paula Seager, to manage a range of projects to support local farming and the food and drink industry. It aims to increase sales and support within the local market and to help build the profile of local food on a national level.
Natural Partnerships CIC manages the Sussex Food & Drink Awards with exactly this intention in mind, supporting rural businesses in the region.
Sussex Farmer of the Year
In association with Farmers Weekly, Karl Schneider, Editorial Director
It’s great to once again be supporting the Sussex Food & Drink Awards, which helps
us get to know the county and seek out local farming talent. Sussex is a superb county which demonstrates real innovation in the land-based industries and we are looking forward to finding some outstanding young champions for British farming here this year.
Sussex Street Food of the Year
Organised by Simon and Amy at Food Rocks
We are supporting The Sussex Food & Drink Awards because they share our philosophy and our desire to celebrate and promote the vast array of wonderful food and drink producers throughout the county. We are very excited to be involved in the Street Food of the Year Award for its fourth year running. The Sussex Street food scene is bursting with passionate chefs preparing incredible dishes of every imaginable cuisine and we can’t wait to once again taste this amazing array of food cooked from local, seasonal ingredients and served in style from converted trucks and bespoke stalls.
Chairman of Judges
William Goodwin, Independent Chairman of the Judges and prominent Sussex farmer and Nuffield Scholar, advocate of local food and drink, supporting the Sussex Food and Drink Awards.
One of the many things that sets these awards apart is the quality and integrity of the judging. We take huge care and go through several stages of judging on each category and I am always extremely impressed by the amount of work and serious dedication that our judges take to ensure that all entries are judged well and fairly.