The two finalists – Towngate Fisheries in Idle, Bradford, West Yorkshire and Fish City in Belfast, Northern Ireland - will now compete against each other in the race to ‘catch’ this top accolade.
To secure a place as a coveted finalist, the shortlisted businesses have been appraised across a variety of judging criteria including menu diversification and innovation to include healthier options, staff training on product contents and ingredients, promotional and marketing activity to highlight healthy meal options to customers, and the monitoring of customer feedback on healthier menu options.
Over the coming weeks, finalists will receive mystery judging assessments from awards auditors who will undertake in-depth audits of both the front and back-of-house operational aspects of the businesses. This final stage of competition judging will determine the overall winner that will be announced at the awards ceremony in London on 26 January 2017.
Sponsored by LoSalt, the UK’s leading reduced sodium salt, the Healthy Eating ‘Fish and Chips’ Award acknowledges UK fish and chip businesses that excel in educating and informing their customers about healthy eating choices and the nutritional values of fish and chips.
Award sponsor Caroline Klinge, Technical Sales and Marketing Manager at LoSalt, commented: “We know consumers are increasingly looking for easy, healthy swaps that don’t compromise on flavour. With this in mind, you now find fish and chip shops offering healthier options such as LoSalt, grilled fish, healthier frying oils and alternative side-dishes.
“This award recognises those fish and chip shops that have gone the extra mile and incorporated several ways to serve their customer a great tasting, healthier takeaway. Congratulations to this year’s finalists, all of them have shown exceptional commitment and effort.”
Marcus Coleman, Chief Executive at Seafish, added: “Research shows that fish and chips is nutritionally better than many other takeaway foods – with a portion providing the body with healthy amounts of protein, carbohydrate, vitamin B6 and B12, iron, calcium, phosphorous, as well as trace elements of iodine, fluorine, zinc and important dietary fibre.
“Prepared with wild caught fish, freshly harvested potatoes, flour for batter, and oil for the cooking medium, fish and chips is still one of the least adulterated prepared foods that we can eat. However, it’s still important that all fish and chip operators seek to also diversify their menus to offer additional healthier options for customers.
“Our two finalists have gone the extra mile to not only offer healthier alternatives but also consistently strive to be ambassadors for our national dish, championing its nutritional contents.”
The National Fish & Chip Awards are recognised as one of the most prominent and respected seafood industry events in the UK. Widely considered as the ‘Oscars’ of the fish frying industry, they celebrate the Great British tradition of fish and chips, showcasing the best talent, quality and choice offered by fish and chip businesses through 13 different award categories.
For further information on The National Fish & Chip Awards please visit www.fishandchipawards.com. Follow @FishnChipAwards on Twitter for all the awards news and information.