With the June 2018 awards, we made several significant changes:
- We overhauled the awards categories and have identified what matters most to our industry.(and thank you to everyone who participated in our focus groups). While our previous categories were good, our new categories are conversation starters!
- Three of our new categories are directly linked to our Association's Food Tourism 2025 Initiative (scroll down to the Goals section). We believe strongly in our goals for our industry and hope that you will too.
- We removed the Best Food Destination category, and handed that over to our strategic partner World Travel Market (WTM), for their new awards program. In alignment with what matters most, our judges felt that it is often very subjective to define "best food destination". We're helping advise WTM's awards in this category and are committed to recognizing it, but it is no longer a core focus of ours.
- All awards categories now take a similar amount of time to process by our judges, so destinations no longer need to pay a higher application fee (past applications from destinations were much more labor intensive, requiring a higher application fee in the past).
- We've announced a new, public Awards Ceremony (taking place on Sunday, November 4 at the Food Travel Innovation Summit in London).
- Awards winners get more benefits, including a complimentary registration to the Food Travel Innovation Summit (a £399 value).
- Several applicants in the past did not have credit cards and therefore were unable to enter the contest because of they were unable to pay. We're now able to accept wire transfer payments at much more affordable rates (US$10 for an inbound wire fee vs. US$40 previously, due to a strategic partnership with a new financial institution). Also, all credit card fees are now included in the application price.
We trust that you'll find these new changes worthwhile, and we look forward to receiving your application!