The 2018 National Fish & Chip Awards have kicked off their 30th anniversary year and are on the hunt to find the UK’s best fish and chip businesses, across a range of award categories.
With the 30 June entry deadline for both the flagship Fish and Chip Shop of the Year Award, and the Drywite Young Fish Frier of the Year Award looming, organiser Seafish is calling on takeaway fish and chip businesses and young fish friers across the country to get their entries in now to secure their ‘plaice’ in this year’s awards programme.
To mark the 30th anniversary, the number of shops receiving physical ‘in-shop’ judging visits in the Fish and Chip Shop of the Year Award category will increase from 60 to 120. The shops that receive a judging visit will be provided with invaluable performance feedback, – just one of the many benefits of entering. The top 10 finalists will also be given the opportunity to join exclusive all-expense paid study trips to destinations such as Norway and the north east of Scotland.
Marcus Coleman, Chief Executive at Seafish, comments: “With an incredible celebratory year ahead of us, there hasn’t been a better time to enter the awards.
“This year, we’ve made it even easier for businesses to submit their entries by simplifying our online entry process. We’re also doubling the number of physical shop judging visits for the Fish and Chip Shop of the Year Award category from 60 to 120. These visits provide invaluable feedback to businesses, allowing them to improve and grow enabling them to hopefully take home the title, if not this year, in a future year.
“The awards give businesses and individuals the opportunity to challenge themselves, while demonstrating passion for the quintessential British meal – fish and chips. I would urge all fish and chip establishments to submit their entry for the chance to be crowned the best in the country.”
Celebrating 30 years of success, the awards – aptly known as the ‘Oscars’ of the fish and chips world – have continuously grown in scale and stature since their formation in 1988, and are now recognised as one of the most prominent and respected seafood industry events in the UK.
The flagship Fish and Chip Shop of the Year Award is one of the highest industry honours to receive as a fish and chip business and previous winners have gone on to great success, reporting sales increases of up to 100%. All businesses that submit entries by 30 July will be entered into a free prize draw to win one of two places (including expenses) on a training course of their choice at the KFE School of Frying Excellence located in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire.
Reigning Fish and Chip Shop of the Year Award winners Nikki Mutton and Craig Maw of Kingfisher Fish & Chips in Plympton, Plymouth, Devon commented: “We were absolutely elated when we won the 2017 National Fish & Chip Awards – it was an amazing experience to go all the way and claim the top title, especially after placing second the year before.
“From the moment our names were called out from that podium at the London awards ceremony we haven’t stopped – we’ve witnessed a dramatic increase in customer footfall and business turnover and word of our success is still continuing to spread! On average our sales have increased 40% and due to increased customer demand we’ve now hired over 10 new members of staff. We’d encourage all fish and chip businesses that are passionate about what they do to enter – speaking from experience it is truly worth it!”
The 2018 award categories open for entry are:
Fish and Chip Shop of the Year Award (closing date 30 June 2017) – Open to all independent fish and chip businesses with a takeaway facility.
Fish and Chip Restaurant of the Year Award (closing date 31 July 2017) – Open to all independent fish and chip restaurants.
Best Mobile Fish and Chip Operator Award (closing date 31 July 2017) – Open to mobile fish and chip businesses.
Best Multiple Fish and Chip Operator Award (closing date 31 August 2017) – Open to fish and chip operators with three or more outlets including franchises.
Best Newcomer Award (closing date 31 August 2017) – Open to fish and chip operators that are new to the industry and that have been in operation since no earlier than 1 May 2015.
Staff Training and Development Award (closing date 31 August 2017) – Open to all fish and chip businesses.
Best Foodservice Operator Award (closing date 30 September 2017) – Open to all foodservice operators that serve fish and chips but where fish and chips is not their core offering – such as pubs, cafes, department stores, hotels, travel and leisure.
From Field to Frier Award (closing date 30 September 2017) – Open to all fish and chip businesses and rewarding knowledge and promotion of responsible sourcing and sustainability practices.
Drywite Young Fish Frier of the Year Award (closing date 30 June 2017) – Open to all applicants who are aged 25 years or younger as of 31 December 2017.
Marketing Innovation Award (closing date 31 October 2017) – Open to all fish and chip businesses.
Good Catch – The Sustainable Seafood Award (closing date 31 July 2017) – Open to all fish and chip businesses and rewarding knowledge and promotion of responsible sourcing and sustainability practices.
Healthy Eating ‘Fish and Chips’ Award (closing date 31 August 2017) – Rewarding businesses that are excelling in educating and informing their customers on healthy choices and the nutritional values of fish and chips.
NFFF Quality Award ‘Champion Award’ (closing date 30 September 2017) – Open to all current National Federation of Fish Friers Quality Award holders.
‘Fish & Chip Friday’ – The School Meal Education Award (closing date 31 October 2017) – Open to entry from independent school catering operators and local council catering departments, and rewarding the serving of healthy fish and chips to school pupils.
For further information on The National Fish & Chip Awards please visit www.fishandchipawards.com or follow @FishnChipAwards.