Organisers of the highly coveted World Food Awards today confirmed that comedy legend Lenny Henry will be hosting the fourth annual gala event, which will take place on Friday 2nd November at the prestigious Lancaster London Hotel.
Henry returns to host the awards for a third year, having built a great rapport with the specially invited audience of ethnic food industry professionals who gather to celebrate and showcase the burgeoning ethnic food sector every year.
The World Food Awards, which have established themselves as a focal point of the UK world food calendar, are open exclusively to companies specialising, promoting or stocking products from the following communities: Asian, Oriental, African, Afro-Caribbean, European, East-European, Middle Eastern, South American and Mediterranean.
Last year’s Awards saw the likes of supermarket giant Tesco, leading eatery Hakkasan, reggae legend inspired philanthropic drinks brand Marley’s Mellow Moods and exotic drinks brand Rubicon, amongst a host of other well-known and respected brands from the word foods sector, walking away with the highly coveted awards.
Henry made his debut at the World Food Awards back in 2010 and over the past two years, he has firmly established his role as host, entertainer and passionate world foods ambassador. He says of the Awards: “This is a fabulous event and it gives me a tremendous amount of pleasure to see the range of food products and increasing quality of nominations each year. Food is at the heart of every culture and community, and the diversity that we see in the world food sector is a reflection of where we as consumers are heading; opening up our hearts, minds and kitchen cupboards to an exciting world of flavours.”
The World Foods Association, organisers of the awards also highlighted a shake-up in the categories this year, with a total of ten awards being presented on the evening:
• Best New Product of the Year - NEW CATEGORY
• Food or Drink Product of the Year - NEW CATEGORY
• Best Packaging of the Year
• Wholesaler of the Year/Catering Supplier of the Year - NEW CATEGORY
• Marketing Campaign of the Year
• National Retailer of the Year
• Exporter of the Year - NEW CATEGORY
• Restaurant of the Year
• Entrepreneur of the Year Award
• Lifetime Achievement Award
Henry adds: “One of the very special elements of World Food Awards is that we see the likes of High Street giants sitting alongside entrepreneurs and businesses that started with a single idea or product and are now competing on the same platform.”
The 2011 Awards featured a glittering array of celebrity guests including chefs Ken Hom, Rob Billington, Anjum Anand and Ravinder Bhogal, as well as actor Nitin Ganatra, director Gurinder Chadha, singer Simon Webbe and sporting legends, Denise Lewis and Chris Eubank. The 2012 Awards ceremony is lining up to be as exciting and glamorous, with performances from leading artists and a host of celebrities, sports personalities and acclaimed chefs to present the awards
This year’s high-profile judging panel consists of some of the UK’s most respected industry experts, including Adam Leyland, Editor of The Grocer, Simon Numphud, Head of AA inspectors and Mintel’s Director of Innovation & Insight David Jago. KPMG’s Sheel Gill will again audit the judge’s results to ensure complete confidence in the judging process.