Finalists Revealed for Canada’s Top Prize for Grocery Newcomers

April 13, 2016

Revamped Canadian Grand Prix Awards honours best new brands on the shelves

To view the complete list of finalists, visit:

They are the grocery products that made the biggest impact in 2015. Today, Retail Council of Canada (RCC) announced the finalists for the 23rd annual Canadian Grand Prix New Product Awards.

The award program celebrates new products across food and non-food categories, as selected by a 37-member jury. Winners will be announced June 1, 2016 at the Toronto Congress Centre as part of STORE 2016, Canada’s largest and most important retail conference.

Like the new products they highlight, the Canadian Grand Prix is new and improved. This year, the categories have been updated to better represent how retailers merchandise and market their products. Finalists were selected under separate consumer packaged goods and private label categories.

“Individually, each of this year’s finalists sets a new benchmark for delivering excellence in product development, marketing and distribution,” says Diane J. Brisebois, President and CEO of RCC. “And taken together, they demonstrate quite brilliantly how adept the industry is in pinpointing and satisfying the wants and desires of today’s demanding grocery shoppers.” 

The expert panel judging the awards comprises consumers, food journalists, packaging designers and marketing executives. Evaluations were conducted in February and March, both in homes and in the test kitchen at the Institut de tourisme et d’hôtellerie du Québec in Montreal. Each entry was graded on presentation and packaging, product attributes, innovation and originality overall value to the consumer.

By heralding the new products that are creating the most buzz on supermarket shelves, the Canadian Grand Prix Awards program is also pointing the way to the future of the  grocery sector in Canada. Jury chair and celebrated chef Marcus Von Albrecht notes, for example, the on-trend move among the finalists to products with a “cleaner ingredient list” – reflecting a hunger for more natural formulations.  “We also saw more products that were regional with local ingredients.”

Also strongly in evidence is the desire for convenience, what Von Albrecht described as “more time at home and quality food to enjoy quickly.”

To become a finalist, a product must score of at least 70% in judging. This year, 93 products reached that mark. To view the complete list of finalists, visit:  

Along with the food and non-food category winners, the Canadian Grand Prix will hand out five special awards – the All-Canadian Award, Innovation and Originality Award, Healthy Innovation Award, Packaging Award, and Consumer Acceptance Award (highest score from Nielsen’s Homescan program).

Finalists and winners can use the Canadian Grand Prix logo on their packaging for two years. RCC also supports the awards with extensive consumer and trade marketing.