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Winners selected for coveted Ohio food contest

Center for Innovative Food Technology (CIFT) President & CEO, Rebecca A. Singer announced two winners of the Ohio Signature Food Contest during the joint Ohio House and Senate Agriculture Committee meeting at the Ohio State Fair.

The contest, co-sponsored by CIFT and the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation, showcases new, innovative products ready to take that next step — actual product development.

These two winners were selected in recognition of their unique product concepts:

  • David Brooks of Dublin, Ohio with his New York deli-style cheesecake. The rich, restaurant-quality cheesecake baked in a shortbread crust that incorporates Ohio ingredients — some of the freshest and finest anywhere, including rich, heavy cream and a unique blend of three vanilla extracts.
  • Amy Pausch of Alexandria, Ohio with her non-alcoholic shrub beverage. The intense raspberry zero-proof drink with a subtlety sweet caramel flavor that comes from unique ingredients including coconut sugar and a dark balsamic vinegar.

Following a series of applications and presentations by food entrepreneurs to a panel of judges, the highest scoring concepts were selected based on the viability of the product, commercialization potential, business strategy, and overall appeal to the marketplace.

As a result of the award, business and technical assistance from CIFT will be provided to the startup businesses with the potential to make product at the Northwest Ohio Cooperative Kitchen (NOCK) in Bowling Green. The NOCK is a commercially-licensed kitchen that educates and provides technical assistance to new and growing food businesses.

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