Athens, Ga. – The best sauces, jams, meats, snacks and sweets in Georgia will duke it out March 11-12 at the Georgia Railroad Freight Depot in Atlanta as part of the University of Georgia’s Flavor of Georgia Food Product Contest. Judges have selected 25 products to compete in the contest’s final round.
“Food entrepreneurs from every corner of the state submitted delicious and innovative Georgia products this year,” said Sharon P. Kane, a UGA food business development specialist and Flavor of Georgia contest coordinator. “From the onion fields in south Georgia to in-town Atlanta, we received products that show off the best that the state has offer.”
The Flavor of Georgia Food Product Contest offers food businesses a chance to highlight their products and gather feedback from a panel of food industry professionals.
Kane and her colleagues at the UGA Center for Agribusiness and Environmental Sciences within the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences have organized the annual contest since 2007.
The 25 finalists were selected from a field of more than 100 products submitted in the contest’s eight categories. Finalists will bring their products to the final round of judging as part of the Governor’s Annual Agriculture Awareness Week held across the street from the Georgia State Capital.
Judges for this year’s final round of the Flavor of Georgia contest include food brokers, buyers, chefs and other food industry experts. They will judge each entry based on flavor, use of Georgia ingredients, Georgia theme, innovation, commercial appeal and originality.
This year’s finalists are listed below by category.
In the dairy category:
• Udderly Cool Dairy Applewood Smoked Gouda by Udderly Cool Dairy LLC in Roopville
• Capra Gia Tuscano Marinated Feta by the Capra Gia Cheese Company in Carrollton
• Flat Creek Lodge Georgia Red cheese by Flat Creek Farm and Dairy in Swainsboro
In the snacks category:
• Edibelles Savannah Fare Southern Praline Snackin’ Mix by Edibelles in Savannah
• Burke Bar by Byne Blueberry Farms in Waynesboro
• Abby J’s Blackhawk “Farm to Table” Bean & Jalapeno Salsa by Abby J’s Gourmet in Clarkesville
In the confections category:
• Sea Salt Caramel Bars by Heidi’s Heavenly Cookies LLC in Alpharetta
• Flavors of the South Chocolate-Covered Caramels by M Chocolat in Alpharetta
• Georgia Peach Tea Bonbons by Chocolate South in Atlanta
• Swedish Chocolate Delights by Swedish Traditions in Tifton
In the jams and jellies category:
• Webbington’s Peach Habanero Jam by Webbington’s in Stockbridge
• Hillside Orchard Apple Ginger Preserves by Hillside Orchard Farms in Tiger
• MiDi Spiced Blueberry Peach Jam by MiDi Blueberry Farm in Byron
In the sauces category:
• Chinese Southern Belle: My Sweet Hottie Homestyle Sweet & Sour Sauce by Chinese Southern Belle, LLC in Smyrna
• Braswell’s All Natural Vidalia Onion Steak Sauce by Braswell Food Company in Statesboro
• Lazy Ray’s Ketchup & Mustard by Lazy Ray’s, LLC in Cumming
In the barbecue and hot sauce category:
• Williamson Bros. Roasted Garlic Bar-B-Que by Williamson Bros. in Marietta
• Q Sauce Classic BBQ Sauce by Q Sauce, LLC in Dacula
• Hotlanta Honey-Honey With a Sting! by Atlanta Bee Company in Atlanta
In the meat and seafood category:
• Georgia Buffalo N.Y. Strip Steak by Georgia Buffalo Inc. in Townsend
• Hunter Pork Company Pork Sausage by Hunter Cattle Company in Brooklet
• Sunset Farm Brand All Natural Bell Pepper and Onion Sausage by Sunset Farm Foods in Valdosta
In the other category:
• Gayla’s Grits by Gayla’s Grits in Lakeland
• Georgia Peaches Tea by Just Add Honey Tea Company in Atlanta
• King Louie Collard Green Seasoning by King Louie Special Blend Seasoning in Fitzgerald
Winners will receive a plaque presented by Gov. Nathan Deal and Commissioner of Agriculture Gary Black and membership in Growing Georgia. All finalists earn the right to have their products stamped with the 2013 Flavor of Georgia logo. They also gain exposure to the grocery buyers and food science professionals who judge the final round of the contest.
Flavor of Georgia is sponsored by the UGA Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development in partnership with the Center of Innovation for Agribusiness, Office of Governor Nathan Deal, Walton EMC, the Georgia Department of Agriculture, the Georgia Agribusiness Council and the UGA department of food science and technology. For more information about the contest, see www.flavorofgeorgia.caes.uga.edu.