Entries are encouraged from small, medium and large food and drink companies, businesses and individuals.
The Entrepreneur Award is open to any owner or manager of a food and drink business whose head office (or business) is located in Scotland and aims to highlight the dynamic individuals who continually identify and develop new ideas to take their business forward.
While the Young Talent award, which is open to entrants between the ages of 16 and 24, is looking for individuals who demonstrate great skill in their chosen sector of the food and drink industry and can represent the industry positively. Entrants can be involved in manufacturing, retailing or any sector directly linked to the food and drink industry.
Past winners of these awards include the 2015 Winner of the Scottish Food & Drink Entrepreneur award, James Watt from BrewDog, who has gone on - alongside co-founder Martin Dickie - to become one of the UK's most successful entrepreneurs in recent years, growing the business to revenues of £32 million last year and building a network of bars across the UK, and exporting its beer worldwide.
The previous year's winner Robert Graham from Graham’s The Family Dairy, has seen his business grow into one of Scotland's most popular dairy brands, with strong annual results for 2015 – and the promise of more growth in the months ahead.
The 2015 Winner of the Young Talent award, Jamie Hutcheon from Cocoa Ooze, whose business has grown from strength to strength, has just announced the opening of the first chocolate themed bistro in Scotland.
Jamie explains why he chose to enter and highlights the benefits of winning the award: "I decided to enter the young talent awards at SFDA to showcase my efforts and achievement since starting my company Cocoa Ooze, i wanted to not only recognise myself but also my team of hardworking 25 members of staff to. I was delighted to win the award and it made all these past years seem worthwhile. The Scotland Food & Drink Excellence Awards young talent is a great award to stand out in the marketplace personally and businesses to industry professionals.”
“The benefits of applying for the awards and in receiving the Young Talent award for me are; increased awareness of Cocoa Ooze, an increased awareness of the Scottish chocolate sector, a greater awareness of the importance of our youth within the Scottish hospitality industry and ultimately we’ve seen an increase in sales for the business."