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The Connecticut Specialty Food Association’s (CSFA) eighth Product Awards Competition was held this week in Plantsville, Conn. One hundred seventy-eight specialty food items from manufacturers based in the state competed in 19 categories.
A panel of 27 judges representing local media personalities, food writers, and chefs from the Connecticut Department of Agriculture’s Farm-to-Chef Program rated products according to overall taste, originality, variety, and flavor. Each judge was assigned to specific categories, responsible for rating an average of about 40 products.
Among the winners was Harney & Sons Tea Co. of Salisbury, Conn., which garnered the 2008 Product of the Year title for its Hot Cinnamon Sunset Tea.
Categories included beverages, dairy, gluten-free, organic, pasta sauces, savory condiments, and snack foods. Among the many products entered in the competition were fine chocolates, ice cream sauces, pestos, pickles, hot and iced teas, flavored nuts and seeds, and seasoned croutons.
“It is truly amazing to see the diversity and quality of fine foods made by producers right here in Connecticut,” noted SCFA director Tricia Levesque. “This competition showcases the best of the best in the state.”
A subdivision of the Connecticut Food Association, CFSA is a nonprofit organization that represents small food businesses based in the state.