This week, we announced that we had won two new Great Taste Awards for the 5th year running. For those of you who keep an eye out for the prestigious label when staring at the supermarket shelves, you’ll know that it is a symbol of quality and an increasingly exclusive achievement. But what does it really mean, and how do you achieve one?
The Great Taste Awards are hosted every year by the Guild of Fine Foods. It is their flagship competition, the world’s largest and most trusted food and drink awards. Thousands of contestants put their food and drink to the test in front of a panel of 500 experts, ranging from chefs and buyers, food writers and retailers – in other words, the people in the industry who really know their stuff.
Founded by Bobo Farrand in 1992, the Guild of Fine Food’s Great Taste Awards have established themselves as the seal of approval for quality. It works something like this.
The Revolver Cooperative team sits around a table and has a discussion about which products in our range are our absolute favourite. Somebody sits strongly in the camp of a south American light roast coffee, while another is a huge coffee bag supporter. After a few hours, a shortlist is devised and we prepare our best products to be sent to Gillingingham to meet the experts.
March 2020 – July 2020.
Covid gets in the way! The entire food and drink industry reorganises itself and other priorities come into play – for us, stocking the supermarket shelves and organising home deliveries. The judging is postponed.
Judging commences… Lots of speculation starts to emerge in Revolver’s offices about the results, while a panel of judges are cupping, tasting and reviewing our submission. Simultaneously, hundreds of other judges are sampling cheeses, beers, pork pies, and every other gourmet food and drink from our friends in the industry.
Results are announced! We log into our online Guild of Fine Foods portal to see the outcome. This year, our Sri Lanka Ceylon Mixed Berry tea bags and El Salvador coffee beans have won awards!
We read through the descriptions:
“There is an inviting bitterness on the aroma of the beans, transferred to traces of smokey spice from the liquid. On the palate, this is boosted by some fruity acidity. The balance is good; there is a degree of dryness on the finish which creates a refreshing mouthful.”
(El Salvador coffee beans)
It’s safe to say that the experts at the Guild of Fine Foods can write slightly more eloquently about coffee and tea than most people. We gratefully pass on the news to our friends around the world, including the farmers in Sri Lanka who grow CoopTea, and the roasters and farmers who grow and produce our coffee in South America and Africa.
After taking stock of the achievement (and maybe having a celebratory drink), we get back to work spreading the Revolver Cooperative message and inviting as many cooperators, retailers and cafes to try our award winning, ethical products.
For us, the Great Taste Awards symbolise an important connection. As many of you know, our philosophy and priority is to offer a cooperative, ethical and environmentally conscious supply of tea, coffee and chocolate – values upheld and encouraged by our hundreds of members around the world. Recognition from organisations like the Guild of Fine Foods goes to show that this business philosophy goes hand in hand with excellent tasting products, which helps to remind us all that we are on the right path.
600 words, 3 min read