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National Grocers Association Reveals 2023 Creative Choice Award Winners

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Industry expert Meg Major returning as award host during The NGA Show, Feb. 26-28

The National Grocers Association, along with sponsoring partners The Kellogg Co. and Unilever, have revealed the winners of their annual Creative Choice Awards, which honors and recognizes the best marketing and merchandising programs in the grocery industry.

Winners of the Creative Choice Awards gain respect throughout the industry and receive national recognition at The NGA Show, taking place Feb. 26-28, at the Caesars Forum Convention Center in Las Vegas. Winning campaigns will be recognized during the “Snack and See: Creative Choice Awards” session on Sunday, Feb. 26.

Judged by a panel of industry experts and trade press members, entries were accepted into eight categories in which one winner and at least one honorable mention were chosen. The judges determined category winners based on creativity, clarity, innovation and effectiveness of each entry. Additionally, two special recognition award winners were selected. In all, NGA received nearly 400 award entries.

“Independent community grocers continue to raise the bar in the creative ways they engage with their customers,” said Laura Strange, NGA’s SVP of communications and external affairs. “Independents are truly the industry’s most innovative marketers as they create campaigns that not only resonate with consumers but celebrate their roles in their respective communities.”

From the category winners, one “Outstanding Marketer” and one “Outstanding Merchandiser” will be selected by the independent supermarket community and their supporters through online voting, open now through Feb. 27. Votes can be cast here.

Respected industry expert Meg Major will be returning as emcee of the awards presentation and moderator of the winners’ panel discussion at the 2023 NGA Show on Feb. 26. Currently the director of industry relations at NielsenIQ, Major offers an extensive knowledge of the grocery industry, adding an increased amount of depth and credibility to Creative Choice.

Connections Through Omnichannel

– Smaller operator (1-15 stores) 

Winner: Hitchcock’s Markets Omnichannel Experience 

Honorable Mention: Wright’s Market Staff Spotlights 

– Larger operator (15+ stores)

Winner: Allegiance Retail Services/Foodtown $9 a Day Challenge 

Honorable Mention: ShopRite Well Everyday

Community Engagement

– Smaller operator (1-15 stores)  

Winner: Briar Patch PatchWorks 

Honorable Mention: Dorothy Lane Market Good Neighbor 5K and Fill the Truck Challenge 

– Larger operator (15+ stores)  

Winner: Needler’s Fresh Market Local Food Fest 

Honorable Mention: Cub Foods Gopher Cub Kindness September Campaign

Traditional Media – TV, Radio and Print 

– Smaller operator (1-15 stores)  

Winner: Newport Avenue Market We’re Worth the Detour 

Honorable Mention: D&W Fresh Market Prime & Choice Beef Dating Profile 

– Larger operator (15+ stores)  

Winner: Cub Foods Title IX 50th Anniversary Commercial 

Honorable Mention: Coborn’s Penny Pincher

Grand Opening or Remodel

– Smaller operator (1-15 stores)

Winner: Bristol Farms Newfound Market Grand Opening Celebration 

Honorable Mention: Reynolds Market Glasgow Reynoldspalooza Grand Re-Opening

– Larger operator (15+ stores)

Winner: Food City Cookeville Campaign 

Honorable Mention: Coborn’s Willmar, Owatonna and Williston Cash Wise

Local, Specialty or Emerging Products

– Smaller operator (1-15 stores)  

Winner: Metcalfe’s Markets We Love Local Sale 

Honorable Mention: Chris’ Food Center 2022 Stew’n It Up with MN Grown 

– Larger Operator (15+ stores) 

Winner: Niemann Foods Hey Clay Fruit and Veg Friends Promotion  

Honorable Mention: Freson Bros. Peace River Sourdough

Seasonal Event

– Smaller operator (1-15 stores) 

Winner: Neiman’s Family Market Hal of a Shrimp Show 

Honorable Mention: Pay-Less Markets Earth Month 

– Larger operator (15+ stores) 

Winner: Coborn’s Valentine’s Day 

Honorable Mention: Homeland Stores Home for the Holidays

Center Store/Frozen/GM/HBC

– Smaller operator (1-15 stores) 

Winner: Chris’ Food Center Frozen Food Month Never Let It Go   

Honorable Mention: Dorothy Lane Market Run for the Roses 

– Larger operator (15+ stores) 

Winner: Pyramid Foods Show Me Beef 

Honorable Mention: Coborn’s Nostalgic Candy

Fresh Departments

– Smaller operator (1-15 stores) 

Winner: Dorothy Lane Market BaconFest  

Honorable Mention: AG Supermarkets Specialty Spotlight 

– Larger operator (15+ stores) 

Winner: Freson Bros. Charlie’s Birthday 

Honorable Mention: Coborn’s Citrus Sale

Special Recognition

Excellence in ESG Award, presented by Kellogg: Coborn’s Inclusive Playground

People Positive Award, presented by Unilever: Coborn’s Women’s History Month

NGA is the national trade association representing the retail and wholesale community grocers that comprise the independent sector of the food distribution industry. An independent retailer is a privately owned or controlled food retail company operating a variety of formats. NGA members include retail and wholesale grocers located in every congressional district across the country, as well as state grocers’ associations, manufacturers and service suppliers.

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