About the Farm Shop & Deli Awards

We hope the information and links contained within this page provides you with all you need to know about the Awards. If however you require any further assistance please contact the team


Quick links

What are the Awards thin

Who are the Awards for thin

What awards can I win thin

How are the awards judged thin

When do the Awards take place thin

Why is consumer voting important thin

How do I enter thin

How can I sponsor an award thin

Other useful links thin

What are the Farm Shop & Deli Awards?

With an expert panel of judges joining Nigel Barden Chair of Judges, the Awards recognise the highest levels of service, product knowledge, initiative, innovation and community involvement, offered by our heroes of the high-street.

The Awards take place across six key stages throughout the year as shown below:

stages banner 2020

During stage one specialist retailers are able to commence their entries, we also invite our judges to nominate retailers they feel are worthy of entering and nominated businesses will receive a letter of invitation from us before the end of August.

In addition, we also have our online nomination form on the website so suppliers, customers, our staff and Farm Shop & Deli Show exhibitors can nominate their favourite businesses to enter. The nominations close mid August and online nominated businesses, who have not yet submitted an entry, will hear from us in early September.

The online entry process for the 2020 Awards should be open in July 2019.


Stage two is our consumer voting stage and, by visiting our entrants page, visitors to the website and entrant customers can vote for their favourite retailer(s). 

Voting for the 2020 Awards will open on 1st September 2019.

Take a look at our entrants by clicking on the button below:

2019 entrants

And it doesn’t stop with the win – the Retailer of the Year winners are invited to join the judging panel, bringing a more cohesive approach to the judging process and an even better understanding of the challenges the entrants face.

The Farm Shop & Deli Awards are a fantastic way for specialist retailers in the food and drink sector to showcase all the great work you and your team are doing nationally and with your local customers.

“After winning the winning the Awards we have definitely had a spike in our customer base which we are really working to keep, we have more retailers coming in. And this award tells them that we are really trying and heading in the right direction by being recognised by another body”
Callum Edge, Owner Edge & Son, 2018 Retailer of the Year

Click on the imagfe below to find out more about the benefits of entering:

Benefits of winning montage

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Who are the Farm Shop & Deli Awards for? 

If you are an independent retailer selling regional fresh/farm produce or with a delicatessen counter you should enter. See below ‘What awards can I win?’ section for more information on the categories.

Entries for the 2020 Farm Shop & Deli Awards will open around July 2019.

As each year the Awards welcome submissions from both new and previous entrants, the mix of category entries change year on year - meaning everyone is a contender. 


Take a look at our retailers who participate in the awards:

2019 entrants 2019 Finalists 2019 category and regional winners

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What Awards can I win?

Category Awards

The Awards cover the following categories:

  • Baker
  • Butcher
  • Cheesemonger
  • Delicatessen
  • Farm Shop - Large Retailer
  • Farm Shop - Small Retailer
  • Fishmonger
  • Food Hall
  • Greengrocer
  • Newcomer*
  • Online business
  • Village Store / Local Shop

*If your shop/business opened after April 2017, you will automatically be entered into the 'Newcomer of the Year' award, as well as proceeding in the category you chose.

You can only enter ONE category per business, so please ensure you choose the category that best suits your business.

See our category descriptions:


Regional Awards

We also celebrate regional winners. Whilst category winners can also win their region, we often have many regional only winners.

The Awards cover the following nine regions

  • East Anglia 
  • Midlands 
  • North East
  • North West 
  • Northern Ireland
  • Scotland
  • South East
  • South West
  • Wales

You will select your region on the online entry form.


Overall retailer of the year winner

Our overall winner is selected by the judging panel from shops/businesses who have won both their category, and region.

Take a look at our 2019 Retailer of the Year.

2019 retailer of the year


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how are the awards judged?

Each award will be judged on the many factors covering speciality retail including highest levels of service, product knowledge, initiative, innovation and community involvement.

Chair of judges, Nigel Barden, will be joined by leading speciality retailers and key industry figures to bring a wealth of knowledge to the judging process. The judging process will include mystery visits and public votes and the public will also have the opportunity to nominate their favourite retailer for the award.

Entrants will be judged within their category, once category winners have been agreed judges will also choose a best Regional winner, who may or may not be a category winner.

In addition, any business that opened after 30 April 2017, will automatically be judged in the Newcomer of the Year category, as well as the category they entered.

Winners of both their category and region will then have the chance to win the prestigious title ‘Farm Shop & Deli Retailer of the Year’. The overall winner will be announced at the Farm Shop & Deli Show in April at Birmingham’s NEC.

Find out more about our judging structure and judges:

Judging structure

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When do the Farm Shop & Deli Awards take place?

2020 Awards key dates
  • Entries for the 2020 Awards will open in July 2019 and close on Friday 20th September.
  • The awards enrtants web page will be live from early September.
  • Consumer voting will commence from 2nd September and closed on 31st October.
  • Judging takes place October to November ahead of the face-to-face judges deliberations mid November.
  • After the initial round of judging, the 'secret' visits will take place in December, January and February.
  • Category and Regional Award finalists will be revealed in early March 2019.
  • Category winners, Regional winners and the overall winner, the Farm Shop & Deli Retailer of the Year, will be announced at Farm Shop & Deli Show at the NEC, Birmingham, on Monday 30th March 2020.

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why is the consumer voting important?

Customer comments are important to the judging process and a chance to show support for local retailers. The consumer votes help decide the category, regional and overall Farm Shop & Deli Retailer of the Year Award winners.

The online votes are designed for you to get as maximum exposure within your local area to raise your profile, and the voting system is designed to help you achieve this. We will provide you with the tools you need to support this such as a press release template, online banners and voting cards for your store.

The votes are used by the judges in the judging process, all votes are compiled and read at the face-to-face judging day. The votes are judged on quality and not just quantity. They are used by the judges to get a full view of your entry.

All online voters will be entered into a prize draw to win a food hamper. The winner will be selected and notified after the online voting closes at the end of October.


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How do I enter?

Entries for the 2020 Awards will be open in July 2019. To register your interest to enter, please click on the image below.

Awards 2020 register interest

More information on the entry process

The entry process is online and below is a useful guide on what to expect:

This online entry form provide tips and advice on how best to approach the answers. In addition the organisers appreciate that, in this specialist sector, ‘one size does not fit all’, so encourage entrants to use the opportunity provided to really showcase their business, it’s attributes, successes and most importantly what sets them apart. 

We recommend, if you have not done so yet, you take a look at our tips on entering:

Tips on entering


Answering the questions:

When completing your anwers consider what makes you stand out from your competitors - why should you win?

The tips we provide for each question are guidance/suggestions ONLY to get you thinking. As each entrant is unique, and not one-size-fits-all, please feel you can offer answers that are relevant to you and your businesses.

Below are the questions from the 2019 entry form as an example (minimum 100 words, maximum 250 words per answer)

1. What category are you entering this business for? (scroll down to the'Choosing your category' section below).
2. Did this business/store open after 1st April 2016? If so you will be asked to provide month and year it opened.
3. What is your business mission? (This is a statement of the purpose and values of your business that will form your profile on our 2019 entrants website page).
4. How has your business grown year on year and what are your plans to continue to grow the business over the next 12/18 months?
This question is about facts & figures and we recommend you use bullet points to provide clear and concise answers to demonstrate your success. Information provided is confidential for judging purposes only. 
Tips: Consider including turnover and growth figures YOY; how many part-time and how many full-time staff you employ; if/how your customer base has increased; how have you grown in comparison to competing businesses within your industry? Have you met your business objectives for the previous year?
5. How do you and your staff develop the relationships with your customers, and your community?
This question is about the passion and inspiration behind your business and staff.
Tips: Tell us what mechanisms you use to nurture the relationship with your staff, customers and community (consider staff training, product selection, shop layout, incentives & events, services offered, how you support your local community?) How do you measure if this is working?
6. Why do you deserve to win?
This question is about what sets you apart from your competition.
Tips: Tell us what is your niche and why do you think you should win? Provide examples of unusual, unique and ground-breaking elements.
7. Do you have anything else you wish to tell us? (Optional).
We understand each business is individual and so this is an optional opportunity for you to tell us anything else pertinent to your business, staff, growth, success, challenges etc, that you have not had a chance to cover in the previous questions.

Registering and commencing your online entry:

  • When you click to the 'Enter the Awards' you will be directed to an online entry form to 'Create an account' or, if you entered in 2018 or 2019 to, 'Sign In'.
  • Once you have 'Created an account', you will receive a registration confirmation email containing a link you must click on to verify your email address before you can Sign In.
  • Sign In.
  • Complete the Entry Form. 
  • You can save the application as you proceed and of course return to it.
  • Upload your photos (further details provided below).
  • Check your answers and photos and ensure you have read and accepted the terms and conditions and consent for your profile photo and copy to be uploaded to the award's website.
  • Only when you are 100% satisfied - Submit your Entry to complete the process.

Please note that the online form for 2019 entries has now closed and will re-open in July 2019 for the 2020 Awards.


Choosing your category:

On the online entry form you will be asked to select your category. Your category is determined by the primary focus of your business.

A shop/business can only enter one of the categories (unless your business/shop opened after April 2017, in which case you will automatically be put forward for 'Newcomer of the Year' as well as your chosen category.)

Take a look at our category definitions:



By entering you will have an opportiunity to win your Category and/or Region. If you win both your category and region you can also win the overall Award: Farm Shop & Deli Awards Retailer of the Year.
If your shop or business opened after April 2076, you may also be lucky enough to win the Newcomer of the Year award, as well as your Category and Regional award!

Take a look at the judging structure for further information:

Judging structure

Uploading your supporting photos:

To accompany your entry, and assist the judges, we ask you to upload the following photos when requested during the online entry process. We recommend considering and preparing these in advance of commencing your online entry and only one photo per question is permitted:

1. Upload an image of your team. (This will be used as your profile picture on the website entrants page).
2. Please show us your shop front or shop window (if relevant to your business).
3. Upload image showcasing your store layout or product range.

Images should be uploaded in JPG format and we recommend files no larger than 8MB

To enable you time to complete the entry at your own convenience, you are able to access and return to the online entry form as many times as you require up to the point where you submit your entry to us. After that no further amends can be made.

We hope this information is useful to you, If you have any questions or require any assistance to enter the awards please contact antonia.green@wrbm.com or call 01293 610235 Monday - Friday between 9am and 5pm. 

You can keep an eye on the website to find out when 2020 entries are open, or click on the button below to register your interest in the 2020 Awards and we will let you know when they launch:

Awards 2020 register interest

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How can I sponsor an Award?

If you are supplier exhibiting at the Farm Shop & Deli Show and are interested in being one of our Farm Shop & Deli Awards Sponsors, please get in touch with us to discuss your options.


Recommend the awards / nominate an entry

Are you a supplier to the specialist retail industry or a customer? Or perhaps you are a retailer who has already entered and know other worthy contenders in this wonderful sector?

Why not nominate one or more retailers and help us to encourange them to enter the Awards? 

Please note: Nominations for the 2019 Awards has now closed and will re-open for the 2020 Awards next summer.


Other useful links:

Awards blogs Contact us Press Releases

Previous winners entries Prizesy Sponsors

Supporters Ts and Cs Videos


Good luck from the Farm Shop & Deli Awards Team!

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Supporting specialist retailers