TOLEDO, Ohio — Ohioans with a strong passion for the food industry now have the opportunity to land their product on grocery store shelves with the Ohio Signature Food Contest, running now through May 31.
Sponsored by the Center for Innovative Food Technology (CIFT) and Ohio Farm Bureau Federation, the contest will showcase new, innovative products from across the state.
Entering is simple and quick. Contestants complete a simple online form outlining the basic details of their product, and food industry experts will judge each based on the viability of the product, commercialization potential, business strategy, marketability and overall appeal to the marketplace.
Emphasis is placed on products integrating Ohio ingredients when possible. Finalists will be invited to present their business concept and product to a panel of judges.
The Ohio Signature Food Contest winner will be announced during a special ceremony in late July at the Ohio State Fair in Columbus.
Following the announcement, the winner will receive: Technical and business development assistance, production of a product to be used for consumer feedback, label assistance, and more.
Production will be available at the Northwest Ohio Cooperative Kitchen in Bowling Green, Ohio.
Products do not need to be fully designed or ready for market, rather an ability to communicate a specific vision.
The technical assistance aspect of the award will provide guidance toward a finished product.
Deadline to submit the completed application is May 31. The entry form along with rules and regulations is available at ciftinnovation.org, or call 419-535-6000, ext. 117 for more information.