Specialty Food Association Ad Contest Winner Announced

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Jin+Ja Drink Selected from 373 Entries

The story of a patent attorney turned ginger drink maker has won the Specialty Food Association’s first-ever advertising contest for specialty food professionals to tell a compelling story about their passion for specialty food.

More than 70,000 votes were cast in the not-for-profit trade association’s “My Story, My Ad” contest to determine the Top 10 finalists. They were selected from 373 inspiring stories about family businesses, culinary breakthroughs, childhood memories, career changes, and more.

This week a panel of advertising and marketing professionals met at the Specialty Food Association’s offices in New York to evaluate the Top 10 entries and select a winner. The panel also chose to name a runner-up.

The winning entry is from Reuben Canada of Canada Enterprises in Philadelphia for Jin+Ja: The Spark of Inspiration. This is Jin+Ja’s second honor this summer. The ginger drink won the Association’s 2013 sofi™ Award for Outstanding Beverage. The prize in the ad contest is a free ad campaign and three-day trip to San Francisco, a $15,000 value. The ad will be featured in top specialty food trade magazines, online, and at the Winter Fancy Food Show in San Francisco, Jan. 19 – 21, 2014.

The runner-up is from sisters Leah and Stephanie Melnik, partners in Awesome Bars, San Francisco, for “You Can’t Fake Awesome.” Awesome Bars is a maker of granola bars. In honor of their runner-up selection, they are being given passes to the Winter Fancy Food Show, complimentary registration to the Association’s signature full-day workshop at the show, The Basics: The Business of Specialty Food, and a marketing consultation with Association executives.

For the winning entries, click here.

The contest is part of the Association’s launch of its new brand: Specialty Food. Craft. Care. Joy. It is designed to highlight the people behind the small businesses that fuel the $86 billion specialty food industry and the innovative foods and beverages they create and bring to market.

“The contest struck a chord,” says Ann Daw, president of the Specialty Food Association. “There are clearly so many wonderful stories to share about the joy and passion and hard work that go into making great food. Both Jin+Ja and Awesome Bars especially stood out for our panel.”

The judges were Amy Binder, CEO, RF Binder; Beth Snyder Bulik, reporter, Ad Age and co-owner, Park Street Pantry; Terry Frishman, principal, Creative Marketing Workshops; Tracy Nieporent, director of marketing & partner, The Myriad Restaurant Group; Denise Purcell, editor, Specialty Food Media; and Rick Roth, founder and CEO, Roth Partners.

About the Specialty Food Association

The Specialty Food Association celebrated its 60th anniversary in 2012. It is a not-for-profit trade association for food artisans, importers and entrepreneurs established in 1952 in New York to foster commerce and interest in the specialty food industry. Today there are more than 3,000 members in the U.S. and abroad. The Specialty Food Association operates the Summer and Winter Fancy Food Shows and presents the sofi™ Awards honoring excellence in specialty food. For more information on the association, go to specialtyfood.com.

Social Media:

Facebook: facebook.com/craftcarejoy
Twitter: twitter.com/craftcarejoy #mystorymyad
LinkedIn: Specialty Food. Craft. Care. Joy.
Pinterest: pinterest.com/craftcarejoy

Specialty Food Association Media Contacts:
Ron Tanner, VP Communications & Education; 646-878-0115, rtanner(at)specialtyfood(dot)com
Louise Kramer, Communications Director; 646-878-0130, lkramer(at)specialtyfood(dot)com

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