Pizza crusts, a steak aging process and a natural ice tea are among winners of the National Restaurant Association’s first annual Food & Beverage Product Innovations Awards. The Association launched the awards to recognize progressive food and beverage products that will make a significant impact in the restaurant industry. The recipients will be showcased in the F&B Product Innovations Gallery during the upcoming NRA Show in Chicago, May 21-24.
“Our independent panel of judges, who represent a broad variety of both commercial and noncommercial industry segments, selected these 13 products based on the forward-thinking approach to food and beverages demonstrated by their creators,” says C.W. Craig Reed, convention chair for this year’s NRA Show and director of food and beverage at Colorado’s Broadmoor Hotel. “These truly innovative products will help drive customer satisfaction and profitability for restaurant and foodservice operators nationwide. As the largest restaurant and hospitality trade show in the United States, the NRA Show offers the perfect forum to explore trends and find new products to enhance menus in the nation’s nearly one million restaurants.”
Winning entries exhibited significant advancements and innovations in ingredients, preparation, processing and packaging.
Award recipients are:
The Max Fit for Kids Plus Whole Grain Stuffed Crust Pizza
This great-tasting pizza is made with all-natural whole wheat flour. The pizza is 51 percent whole grain, and meets new National School Lunch standards, including lower sodium. It comes in two varieties: Cheese and Turkey Pepperoni.
PAM® Cooking Sprays
PAM has converted all of its cans to an environmentally improved two-piece can, which requires less energy and materials to produce. The can weighs 10 percent less than traditional three-piece cans and generates less waste in the environment.
This is a scientifically proven, unique European technology that allows any operator to create custom dry-aged steak (including prime, choice, and organic) using a clean, protected environment in any refrigerator or commercial walk-in.
Spreadable Roasted Garlic Herb Butter
This chef-created, versatile spread is delicious, convenient and consistent enough to scale up for large operations. The product uses all-natural, premium ingredients blended with Grade AA butter.
Fermin & Wagshal's
Ibérico de Bellota Heritage Pork
The legendary, free-range, 100 percent pure Iberian pigs in Western Spain feed on acorns and herbs, resulting in a meat infused with a buttery, nutty flavor. This Spanish favorite is now available to U.S. operations for the first time ever.
Food Market Merchandising
got milk? Magic Milk Straws
All-natural, gluten-free, allergen-free, preservative-free and with virtually no sugar added, this product is a smart treat choice that encourages children to choose milk over less healthy beverage options.
H.J. Heinz Company
Heinz® Dip & Squeeze® Ketchup
Heinz® Dip & Squeeze® Ketchup is a revolutionary new product designed to fit consumers’ on-the-go lifestyle. With three times the ketchup of a traditional 9-gram packets and a portable, clean, dual-function package, Dip & Squeeze® Ketchup enhances the eating experience for adults and children alike.
Boulder Canyon All Natural Snacks in Fully Compostable Packaging
This all-natural line of snacks is now available in fully compostable packaging produced from wood pulp that is sourced from managed plantations. The packaging is 100 percent compostable in all key biodegradation situations and is certified to meet compostable packaging standards (ASTM 6400).
La Brea Bakery
The quest for a nationally distributed Telera roll—used to create an authentic Mexican Torta sandwich—is finally over. This all-natural, hearth-baked roll has a light golden crust and soft interior.
Lamb Weston, (a brand of ConAgra Foods)
Sweet Things Mini Tater Puffs®
These unique and flavorful puffs made from on-trend sweet potatoes are perfectly sized for enjoyment in any meal occasion. Crispy outside and tender inside, they are great for dipping, plus they offer versatile preparation, including conventional baking.
Teafinity Natural Brewed Iced Tea with the Brewmaster System
This two-part breakthrough features a liquid tea concentrate and revolutionary dispensing system that, when used together, deliver the appearance and taste of consistent, high-quality fresh-brewed tea.
Hand-stretched Wood-fired Pizza Crusts
Produced in Italy, these parbaked, artisan pizza crusts are made with all-natural, premium ingredients and hand-rolled so that no two are exactly alike. Now operators can offer premade pizza crusts that look like they were handcrafted on-premise.
The Bread House & Granary
Going Chia! Energy Fiber Bars
These bars are made with freshly milled Montana hard red whole wheat infused with the ancient and powerful chia seeds, creating a tasty, nutritious and on-trend meal replacement or snack option.
Award recipients were selected based on judges’ evaluation of the products as well as claims made by the manufacturers.