The 15th NEW ZEALAND ICE CREAM AWARDS are now open for entries, with judging to take place in Auckland from Wednesday, 4th May. Results will be announced at the NZ Ice Cream Manufacturers’ Association (NZICMA) Annual Conference in Queenstown on Thursday, 26th May.

This year the NZICMA is changing the structure of the Supreme Award, for the first time in its 15 year history.

In the past there has been an overall Supreme Award winner, but in recognition of the growth in small boutique ice cream and gelato manufacturers, there will be a Supreme Award for Large Manufacturers and a Supreme Award for Boutique Manufacturers. Similar to the New Zealand Cheese Awards, the criteria will be determined by the manufacturer’s annual production with a declaration on the entry form. A Boutique manufacturer must produce less than 500,000 litres per annum.

The Best in Category awards can be won by a Large or Boutique manufacturer. All Gold Award winning entries are then eligible for the Supreme Awards based on their score.

There are separate categories for Low Fat, Gelato and Sorbet and these three categories cater for those products that do not meet the Standard or Premium Ice Cream formulation guidelines.

Last year’s Supreme Award was won by a blend of low fat yoghurt and ice cream which is 97% fat free – Tip Top Creamy Yoghurt Ice Cream Strawberry made by Fonterra Brands (Tip Top) Ltd.

The Vanilla Ice Cream judging is divided into Standard and Premium Categories which allows Premium Vanilla Ice Cream to be judged separately from other Premium products. The Standard Vanilla Ice Cream category will include products that contain between 10%–10.9% milk fat content, and the Premium Vanilla Ice Cream category will contain not less than 11% milk fat and may contain vanilla additions.

The ‘Open Creative’ category once again has two sections, Ice Cream and Gelato/Sorbet, and is open to any individual, restaurant, hotel or catering establishment that produces and serves these products on the premises. Entries in this category should not be available for sale in any retail outlet. Entries are also expected from the Research and Development departments of the manufacturers and suppliers. Last year a yoghurt and lemon curd gelato made by Jamie Mew of Valentino’s won the Best in Category Award.

The Packaging Category will be for new packaging introduced in the previous 12 months and will be judged on the elements of design, innovation, graphics and labelling. Judging will also take into account the environmental impact of the packaging and its compliance with the New Zealand Packaging Accord. This category will include both novelty and takehome packaging.

Mrs Kay McMath is the Chief Judge and has been judging the Ice Cream Awards since 2002. Judging will take place at Massey University in Albany at the beginning of May and the Association acknowledges the support of Massey University for the use of their facilities.

The ’Kids’ Choice’ category will again be judged by local children and the Packaging category will be judged by a Senior Lecturer in Packaging Technology at Massey University.

Last year the New Zealand Ice Cream Manufacturers’ Association (Inc.) managed to retain the same level of interest in the Awards despite the economic climate over the previous year. Entry levels in 2010 were as high as the 2009 year (228 entries) coming from a range of large corporate companies as well as small owner operators of retail outlets.

Each Category will be sponsored by an Associate Member of the NZICMA.

The categories and sponsors of the 2011 New Zealand Ice Cream Awards are:

1 Standard Vanilla Ice Cream – Sensient
2 Standard Chocolate Ice Cream – Invita NZ Ltd
3 Standard Ice Cream with Inclusions – Natural Sugars (New Zealand) Ltd
4 Premium Vanilla Ice Cream – Danisco New Zealand
5 Premium Ice Cream – Chelsea Sugar
6 Open Creative – Alto Food Packaging
7 Kids Choice – International Flavours & Fragrances (NZ) Ltd
8 Export Ice Cream – Fonterra NZ Ltd
9 Gelato – Huhtamaki
10 Sorbet – Formula Foods
11 Low Fat – Hawkins Watts Ltd
12 New Packaging (launched in prev. 12 months) – Salkat

The closing date for entries is MONDAY, 18th APRIL 2011.

Entry Forms and Rules are also available from:

The Executive Secretary
New Zealand Ice Cream Manufacturers’ Assn (Inc)
PO Box 9364, Wellington 6141
Telephone (04) 385 1410
Fax No. (04) 384 3980
Email [email protected]

The Ice Cream Awards were instituted in 1997. The specific objective of the Awards is the raising of standards and promoting the quality of New Zealand Ice Cream.

Historical information on The New Zealand Ice Cream Awards for the years 2000 through to 2010 is also available on the Association’s website,

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