The New Zealand Food Awards are a celebration of Aotearoa’s finest local food and beverage producers, showcasing the best of New Zealand’s food and beverage innovation, excellence and sustainability.

Plant-based mince, seaweed salt, and Sauvignon Blanc Gin are just some of the new Kiwi products announced as finalists in the 2021 New Zealand Food Awards powered by Massey University.

There were more than 170 entries this year, and from those a team of judges whittled down the best of the best, ending up with 66 finalists from 45 companies from across the country.

Head Judge Kay McMath says judges focused on finding innovative, high quality and sustainable products.

“The team of judges are happy to present an exciting array of finalists for this year’s New Zealand Food Awards. All of these finalists had focused on meeting consumer demands, be that for nutrition, convenience, variety or excellence using technology, creativity and sound processes. Congratulations to all these finalists on a superb achievement!”

Finalists include several winners from previous years, but also an impressive line-up of new brands and products.

Renowned chef of Homeland NZ, Peter Gordon joined the judging panel this year. He said: “As a first-time judge, I was excited to be a part of a broad panel of expertise. The judging is about so much more than one person’s point of view and I learned a lot from the experience. I was really encouraged to see so much innovation in the health and wellbeing space – products that cater for different dietary requirements. Consumers can be excited to see a broad spectrum of finalists, there’s some really exciting surprises in there.”

Lifetime Achievement Award

The New Zealand Food Awards also announced the finalists for the Product Lifetime Achievement Award – sponsored by AsureQuality. This award was introduced in 2019 and celebrates Kiwi products that have withstood the test of time. The 2021 finalists are: Wattie’s ‘Tomato Sauce’, Whittaker’s ‘Peanut Slab’ and Vogel’s ‘Original Mixed Grain Bread’.

The New Zealand Food Awards have celebrated New Zealand’s food and beverage manufacturers, focusing on innovation, sustainability and excellence, since 1987. Powered by Massey University, the awards are open to small and large food and beverage manufacturers, primary food producers, food service providers and ingredient supply companies.

Finalist and winning products earn the New Zealand Food Award’s quality mark to highlight their technical capability, consumer acceptability, regulatory compliance and food quality and safety to shoppers and industry.

The awards programme is made possible with the support of the NZ Food Awards Partner Network:

Massey University, Palmerston North City Council, New Zealand Food Safety, Countdown, Cuisine, AsureQuality, KiwiSo, New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, BNZ, Villa Maria, FMCG Business, FoodHQ, The Food Innovation Network, XPO and The New Zealand Institute of Food Science & Technology Ltd.


Artisan Award – Sponsored by Cuisine

Bellefield Butter Co. – Brown ‘Butter’ Ghee

Beard Brothers – Pork and Cress

Beard Brothers – Pork and Palusami

Beard Brothers – Pork and Puha

Chatham Island Food Co. ¬– Chatham Blue™

Manaaki – Piripiri Plum Chutney

Moreish Organic Butchery – Pure Organic Beef Burger Patties

NewFish – Blackfoot Pāua Saucisson 1kg

Pacific Harvest – Power of Three Seaweed Flakes

The Gardener – Beetroot & Date Chutney

The Hemp Butter Co – Maple Almond Hemp Butter

The Wild Fermentary – Smoky Kāpeti

Well & Truly Artisan Pantry – Make at Home Vitality Bars

Zaroa NZ – Pohutukawa Smoked Venison Savernaccio

Below Zero Award – Sponsored by FoodHQ

Juicies – Watermelon Juicies

Kim’s Kitchen – Gluten Free Steamed Buns: BBQ Pork

Let’s Eat – Plant-Based Golden Nuggets

Little ‘Lato – Roasted Hazelnut (Dairy-Free)

Marlie Bites – Marlie Bites – Mixed Flavours

Beverage Award – Sponsored by Food Innovation Network

Borage and Bee Meadery – Semi-Sweet Session Mead

Chia Sisters – Immunity Hot Tonic

Dancing Sands – Sauvignon Blanc Gin

Froth Technologies – Live Liquid Yeast, FT02 – Vape (Hazy Ale)

Greenroots Juicery – Sun Rising

Soochi – Glow Berry Skin and Gut

Studio Red Wellness – Organic Infusion – Peppermint & Kawakawa

Chilled Award – Sponsored by Massey University

Food Nation – Magic Mince – Mexican, Corn & Red Pepper

Food Nation – Magic Mince – Mushroom & Hemp

Kc Kombucha – Kc3 Springtime Kombucha

The Wild Fermentary – Smoky Kāpeti

Zaroa NZ – Pohutukawa Smoked Venison Savernaccio

Health and Wellbeing Award – Sponsored by Countdown

Food Nation – Magic Mince – Mexican, Corn & Red Pepper

Food Nation – Magic Mince – Mushroom & Hemp

Kim’s Kitchen – Gluten Free Steamed Buns: BBQ Pork

Wholesome You – Multiseed Crackers

Novel Award – Sponsored by KiwiSo

Dancing Sands – Sauvignon Blanc Gin

Grater Goods – Plant Pastrami

NewFish – Blackfoot Pāua Saucisson 1kg

Spring Sheep Milk Co. – Gentle Sheep Toddler Milk Drink Stage 3

Upcycled Grain Project – Upcycled Grain Crackers – Parmesan

Vince – Vegetable Mince – Mexican Style

Pantry Award – Sponsored by Countdown

Fix & Fogg – Protein Peanut Butter

FreeFOD – Low FODMAP Garlic Replacer

OSM® – The Original Craft™ Bar

Pacific Harvest – Seaweed Salt

Pic’s Peanut Butter – Peanut & Chocolate Butter

Vince – Vegetable Mince – Mexican Style

Primary Sector Award – Sponsored by New Zealand Food Safety

Chatham Island Food Co. ¬– Chatham Blue™

Hemp Connect – Hemp Hearts

NewFish – Blackfoot Pāua Saucisson 1kg

Product Lifetime Achievement Award – Sponsored by AsureQuality

Wattie’s – Tomato Sauce

Whittaker’s – Peanut Slab

Vogel’s – Original Mixed Grain Bread


Business Innovation Award – Sponsored by BNZ

Barefoot Eatery

Froth Technologies

Little ‘Lato

Pacific Harvest

Spring Sheep Milk Co.

Food Safety Culture Award – Sponsored by New Zealand Food Safety

Beard Brothers

Chatham Islands Food Co.

Little ‘Lato


Food Hero Award – Sponsored by Palmerston North City Council


New Zealand Food Network

Oakley’s Premium Fresh Vegetables Ltd

Perfectly Imperfect

The Sustainable Food Co.


18 August – Finalists announced and tickets to the gala dinner go on sale

18-31 August – People’s Choice voting opens

14 October – Gala dinner and winners announced, Central Energy Trust Arena, Palmerston North, 7pm-11pm

Tickets on sale now at

Single ticket: $200 + GST

Table of ten: $1950 + GST

For more information, visit
Facebook: @NewZealandFoodAwards
Twitter: @NZFoodAwards
Instagram: @NewZealandFoodAwards

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