Seafood Excellence Awards Presented at Seafood Expo North America

Seafood Excellence Awards Presented at Seafood Expo North America
The 2019 Seafood Excellence Awards went to East Coast Seafoods' Lobster Macaroni & Cheese (left) for Best New Foodservice Product, and St. James Smokehouse's Saint Pure Salmon for Best New Retail Product

The 2019 Seafood Excellence Awards winners were bestowed on the first day of Seafood Expo North America (SENA)/Seafood Processing North America, taking place March 17-19 in Boston.

Scotland- and Miami-based St. James Smokehouse garnered the Best New Retail award for its Saint Pure Salmon, and Topsfield, Mass.-based East Coast Seafood received the Best New Foodservice award for its Lobster Macaroni & Cheese Bites.

Winners were chosen from a group of 12 finalists during a live judging the morning of March 17 by a panel of seafood buyers and industry experts from the retail and foodservice industries.

This year’s judges were Ben Newlin, senior culinary operations specialist at The Cheesecake Factory, in Calabasas, Calif.; Mark Hogan, director of center of the plate, Springfield, Mo.-based SGC Foodservice; and Josanna Busby, category manager, seafood, sidecase, frozen meats and seafood at Salisbury, N.C.-based Food Lion LLC, whose parent company, Ahold Delhaize USA, is No. 4 on Progressive Grocer’s 2018 Super 50 list of the top grocers in the United States.

The finalists were winnowed down from the 59 products taking part in the Seafood Expo North America New Product Showcase, which features seafood products, condiments and culinary dishes introduced in the past year by exhibiting companies.

The Seafood Excellence Awards honor the product leaders in the North American seafood market. Entries are judged according to several criteria, among them uniqueness and appropriateness to the market, taste profile, market potential, convenience, nutritional value, and originality.

Co-located with Seafood Processing North America, SENA is North America’s largest seafood trade event, drawing more than 22,000 seafood professionals from more than 110 countries and 1,300-plus exhibiting companies. The event is produced by Portland, Maine-based Diversified Communications.