NoWFOOD Centre celebrates having Great Taste

A total of 10 companies who have been supported by NoWFOOD have been awarded coveted Great Taste stars.

Great Taste is organised by the Guild of Fine Food. For this year’s awards, over 500 judges, from all corners of the food world, blind-tasted over 12,000 products. The judges took into account the texture, appearance and quality ingredients – but, ultimately, they were simply looking for great taste! Only 37% of entrants were then accredited, with either three stars (the highest), two stars or one star.

NoWFOOD is celebrating the following award winners:

  • Carslake Tea Company (2 stars for their Organic Mojito Green Tea);
  • Chilli Gourmets (2 stars for their Purple Carrot Chilli Relish; 2 stars for their Crunchy Carrot Indian Style Relish; 1 star for their Jumping Jack Marinade; and 1 star for their Sun Kissed Scotch Bonnet Hot Sauce);
  • Crave (2 stars for Karen’s Spicy Sugar Free Marinade; 1 star for their Spicy Marinade);
  • Africa Al (1 star for their West African Mild Curry Paste);
  • Big 5 Sauces (1 star for their Roast Chilli and Garlic Paste);
  • Clotton Hall Dairy (1 star for their Cheshire Clotted Cream);
  • Jeffrey’s Tonic (1 star for their Lime, Galangal and Orange Tonic and 1 star for their Yarrow, Rosehip and Elderflower Tonic);
  • Mrs Picklepot (1 star for their Pickled Onions with Chilli);
  • Natural Veg Men (1 star for their 9 Meals from Anarchy Veg Stock).

Wirral-based Chilli Gourmets had an impressive total of four products rated – two at 2 stars, and two with 1 star. Jane Fern from Chilli Gourmets said: “I am not someone who is generally in the habit of entering for awards, but the Great Taste star awards are something, as a long term foodie, that I always looked out for as a consumer. I reasoned that if they gave me such confidence as a consumer then they would help to give new customers confidence in my brand and products. It is challenging making the move away from farmers’ markets into retail, it is so much easier to inspire confidence in your customers when they can taste your products before buying. I still try to do lots of tasting for all my retail outlets but, if I am going to expand and move forward, it will just not be possible for me to keep up! I like the fact that the Great

Taste Awards are judged blind, so the judges are not influenced by branding or previous reputation but purely on the taste. Judging will always be somewhat subjective and down to personal taste, which is why the feedback they give you is also so helpful.

“The team at NoWFOOD has given me such practical and moral support in building my little business and I am looking forward to working with them going forward, to work out which way to take Chilli Gourmets next!”

The Natural Veg Men, who are based in Malpas, achieved 1 Great Taste star for their 9 Meals from Anarchy Veg Stock. Tom Whitley, from the Natural Veg Men, said: “We entered the Great Taste as we think they are the most credible and recognisable food awards in the UK.  Being awarded a star is fantastic and perhaps the best endorsement of the quality of a product there is. This is the second Great Taste award we have won and being based at NoWFOOD allowed us to expand our range as well as producing enough to keep up with demand for our existing products.”

Phil Burnett from Carslake Tea Company added: “Carslake Tea Company had not previously entered any of our blends into the Great Taste Awards, but our Organic Mojito Green Tea was so popular with our consumers that we decided to enter in 2018. Having achieved 2 stars, we are extremely proud of our achievement and believe it will be very beneficial for developing new contacts and customers. Since starting, we have appreciated the support from NoWFOOD in assisting with facilities, knowledge and training. It has been invaluable in our business’s development.”

Jeff George, Manager of the NoWFOOD Centre at the University of Chester, said: “We are extremely proud to be associated with so many local Great Taste award winners. These companies have all been supported in some way by NoWFOOD – some are tenants within the Centre, and many have received support from the University of Chester through the ERDF funded Cheshire and Warrington Business Development Growth Programme– in terms of kitchen and recipe development support, and/ or marketing guidance, to help them improve the visibility of their brand. Being recognised by Great Taste is obviously a major stepping stone in the development of their food businesses, and we would like to congratulate them all!”