Twenty-two of Ireland’s natural health retailers were handed awards in seven categories at the inaugural ‘Putting Our Best Foot Forward’ event in Shannon, County Clare, on January 29th.
The day was focused on networking, panel discussions and sectoral awards, with 40 trade exhibitors and over 60 retailer participants representing more than 70 health food shops.
International Retail Consultant Tim Radley, author of VM-Unleashed, set the tone for the event with a positive message for independents of a noted decline in pureplay online retail in favour of bricks and mortar specialists. Authenticity and co-operation in a passionate supply chain will be the key dynamics for a successful retail future, he said.
The return of the annual Health Stores Ireland/New Natural Business retailer awards was the centrepiece of the day with retailers picking up prizes under a range of categories, receiving due recognition for their resilience and innovation through turbulent trading years.
These are the results:
Marketing & Social Media
Joint Winners: Natural Health Store, Wexford and Dr Clare Apothecary, Galway
Highly Commended Only Natural, Wexford and Remedies, Dungarvan
Winner: The Hopsack, Dublin
Highly Commended: Organico, Bantry and Healing Harvest, Kinvara
Training & Education
Winner: Evergreen Healthfoods, Galway
Highly Commended: Golden Health Store, Longford and Health Store, Galway
Joint winners: Open Sesame, Gort and Healthy Haven, Thurles
Highly commended: Loop de Loop, Castletownbere and Nice & Natural, Cootehill
Local Food Champion
Winner: Health Connection, Ennis
Highly commended: Fruit ‘n Nut, Portlaoise and Food For Life, Callan
Innovation & Business Development
Joint winners: Simple Simon’s, Donegal and Horan’s Healthstores, Tralee
Highly commended: Natures Hand, Limerick and Evolv, Enniscorthy
Winner: Celestial Times, Kilrush
Highly commended: Horan’s, Sligo