- RESEARCH & AWARDS
- CATEGORY REVIEWS
When the beginning of the year rolls around, and voting opens for the next installment of PLBuyer’s Category Colonels awards, there are a few things you know you can count on.
And one of them is Nice-Pak and Ralston taking home an award. They’ve done it in all 13 years that our magazine has hosted the contest, consistently recognized by our readers as leaders in the private label industry.
As we hear more and more retailers talking about wanting more than transactional relationships with suppliers, wanting to find true partners to help lead the industry and their brands going forward, it’s worth taking a look at some of the 2013 Category Colonel winners.
The company with the most awards this year was LiDestri. Followed by Cott. Windsor Foods. Garcoa Labs. Tower Labs. Bay Valley Foods. Sturm Foods. Karlin Foods. Lance Private Brands.
These are names that stand out in their respective fields, and have for a long period of time. And as you look down the list of winners, familiar faces such as Jel Sert, Vi-Jon Laboratories, Barrel O Fun Snack Foods, Clement Pappas, Lakeside Foods, Presto Products, Red Gold, Schreiber Foods and Simmons Pet Food all appear with multiple gold awards.
Being a leader in the private label supply industry is in large part about innovation, about quality, about process. But there is something to be said today for longevity, trust, and stability.
Coming out of the Great Recession, a host of companies in every industry have come and gone, subject to the crushing effects of slow consumer spending, a credit crunch, and some of their own mistakes in overextending their businesses.
But look at these names, these companies, these honorees. They haven’t gone anywhere. Many of them have made it through as strong or stronger than ever, despite the hard times. They haven’t rested on their laurels and let their single top product simply go through the chain. They’ve expanded, they’ve changed, they’ve followed the trends and found ways to connect to their retailers and consumers.
These are the companies that have put together lasting partnerships with their retailers, and they are the trusted companions that will continue with those relationships going forward.
Plenty of new companies have come along, and will continue to pop up and grow. Some of them will create products and categories that can change the industry. And some of them might become fixtures on our Category Colonel award winner list. As suppliers such as LiDestri, Cott and others have done over the years.
But all of those new entrants, all of those smaller companies looking to find a way to make their mark in the private label industry, could do well to learn the lessons from companies such as these.
There is something to be said in today’s market for trust. For stability. For quality. And for longevity.
PLBuyer wants to congratulate all 234 award winners, as well as all the readers who took the time to participate in the contest.
—Chris Freeman, Editor, PLBuyer
An Overview of the Winners
There were 166 different companies honored, 11 more than were honored in 2012. And multiple winners abounded, with 40 companies winning at least two awards. The 13th version of the Category Colonels contest featured 234 awards given over 117 categories, the most categories honored in the history of the competition.
Category Colonel stalwart LiDestri picked up the most overall awards in the 2013 contest. The maker of sauces, dips and salsas earned seven awards, including three golds and four silvers, the most silvers of any company in the contest.
Cott was next up with six overall awards, including four golds and two silvers.
Windsor Foods was honored with the most golds in the 2013 contest. All five of its Category Colonel awards were golds. Garcoa Labs also brought home five awards, four of them golds.
Tower Labs picked up four golds for all its awards, while Bay Valley Foods also collected four awards, including three golds and a silver. Sturm Foods also picked up four awards, including one gold and three silvers.
Two other companies earned three gold awards: Karlin Foods and Lance Private Brands.
Other companies earning three Category Colonel awards were: Jel Sert (2 golds, 1 silver), The Carriage House (1 goal, 2 silvers), US Nonwovens (1 gold, 2 silvers), Ventura Foods (1 gold, 2 silvers), and Vi-Jon Laboratories (2 golds, 1 silver).
Companies earnings two Category Colonel awards included: Barrel O Fun Snack Foods (2 golds), Clean Ones (1 gold, 1 silver), Clement Pappas (2 silvers), Delta Brands (2 golds), Frozsun Foods (2 golds), Gilster-Mary Lee (1 gold, 1 silver), Hormel Foods (2 silvers), Jasper Products (2 silvers), Lakeside Foods (2 gold), Little Lady Foods (2 silvers), Lucerne Foods (2 silvers), Mario Camacho Foods (2 silvers), Nice-Pak (1 gold, 1 silver), Pacific Coast Producers (1 gold, 1 silver), Presto Products (2 golds), Ralston (2 silvers), Red Gold (2 golds), Schreiber Foods (2 golds), Seneca Foods (1 gold, 1 silver), Shandiz Natural Foods (1 gold, 1 silver), Simmons Pet Food (2 golds), Sun Products (1 gold, 1 silver), SunOpta (1 gold, 1 silver), United Exchange (2 silvers), US Cotton (1 gold, 1 silver), and Webster Industries (2 silver).
Finally, PLBuyer would like to single out two companies for continuing a winning streak in the Category Colonels competition. These companies have won Category Colonel awards in their respective categories every year since the contest began: Nice-Pak (Pre-moistened Wipes) and Ralston (Breakfast Foods/Cereal).
Congratulations to all winners in the 2013 competition.
2013 PLBuyer Category Colonels Winners
Food & Beverage Category Colonels
|Alternative Beverages||Cott||Clement Pappas|
|Asian Food||Windsor Foods||Day-Lee Foods|
|Baby Food/Formula||PBM Products||LiDestri Foods|
|Baked Goods||Cloverhill Bakery||Bonert's Slice of Pie|
|Bakery Mixes||Gilster - Mary Lee||Bektrom|
|Beverage Mixes||Jel Sert||Sturm Foods|
|Beverages - Sport/Energy Nutritional||Cott||Berner Food & Beverage|
|Beverages, Alcoholic||Winery Exchange||LiDestri Foods|
|Beverages, Smoothies||Frozsun Foods||Jasper Products|
|Bottled Water||Niagra Bottling||Cott|
|Bread/Dough - Frozen||Joseph Campione||T. Marzetti|
|Bread/Dough - Refrigerated||Dakota Brands||Furlanis|
|Candy||Palmer Candy||Brach's Confections|
|Cheese Specialty||Schreiber Foods||Dairy Foods USA|
|Cheese: Natural||Great Lakes||Saputo Cheese|
|Cheese: Shelf - Stable||Schreiber Foods||ICCO Cheese|
|Coffee||Massimo Zanetti||Mother Parker's|
|Condiments - Barbeque||LiDestri Foods||The Carriage House|
|Condiments - Ketchup||Red Gold||The Fremont Company|
|Condiments - Mayonnaise||Ventura||Cains|
|Condiments - Mustard||Olds Products||Golding Farms|
|Condiments - Salsa||Red Gold||LiDestri Foods|
|Cookies||Lance Private Brands||Interbake Foods|
|Crackers||Lance Private Brands||Bloomfield Bakers|
|Dairy - Organic||Aurora Organic Dairy||Jasper Products|
|Deli Meats||Carl Buddig & Co.||West Liberty Foods|
|Desserts - Frozen/Refrigerated||J & J Snack Foods||Jel Sert|
|Dry Dinner Mixes||Karlin Foods||S.T. Specialty Foods|
|Eggs||Willamette Egg Farm||Michael Foods|
|Fruit - Canned||Seneca Foods||Pacific Coast Producers|
|Fruit - Frozen||Frozsun Foods||Imperial Frozen Foods|
|Fruit Snacks||National Raisin||Mariani|
|Gelatin/Puddings||Jel Sert||Sturm Foods|
|Hispanic Foods||Windsor Foods||Bay ValleyFoods|
|Ice Cream/Novelties||Fieldbrook Foods||Lucerne Foods|
|Italian Food||Windsor Foods||Seviroli|
|Jams/Jellies/Preserves||LiDestri Foods||The Carriage House|
|Juices - Refrigerated||Florida's Natural||CitruSource|
|Juices - Shelf-Stable||Cott||Clement Pappas|
|Kosher Products||Giovanni Foods||Hormel Foods|
|Meats (Prepared) - Frozen||Windsor Foods||The Perfect Bite Co.|
|Meat - Refrigerated/Frozen||Windsor Foods||Little Lady Foods|
|Meat - Canned||Crider||Hormel Foods|
|Meat Snacks||Old Wisconsin||Specialty Foods Group|
|Ntus/Seeds/Trail Mixes||Amport Foods||John B. Sanfillippo & Son.|
|Oils||Fine Italian Food||Ventura|
|Olives||Bell-Carter Foods||Mario Camancho Foods|
|Organic Cookies||Lance Private Brands||Commercial Bakeries Corp.|
|Pasta - Dry||Dakota Growers||American Italian Pasta Co.|
|Pasta - Refrigerated/Frozen||Bertagni||Freiberger|
|Pizza - Frozen||Palermo's Pizza||Little Lady Foods|
|Potatoes - Frozen||Cavendish Farms||Lamb Weston|
|Poultry - Frozen/Refrigerated||Tyson Foods||Pierre Foods|
|Prepared Meals||Karlin Foods||Gilster - Mary Lee|
|Produce||Cavendish Produce||Walker's Food Products|
|Rice||Karlin Foods||Riviani Foods|
|Salad Dressings||Bay Valley Foods||Ventura Foods|
|Salty Snacks/Chips||Barrel O' Fun Snack Foods||Snak King|
|Salty Snacks/Pretzels||Barrel O' Fun Snack Foods||Evans Food Group|
|Sauces and Marinades||The Carriage House||Chelten House|
|Seafood Canned||Transnational Foods||Bumble Bee|
|Seafood Frozen||High Liner Foods||American Pride|
|Snack/Granola Bars||Shandiz||ConAgra Foods|
|Snacks/Appetizers||FrozenGreat American Appetizers||McCain Foods|
|Soup - Canned||Bay Valley Foods||Morgan Foods|
|Soup - Refrigerated||Overhill Farms||Marsan Foods|
|Sweeteners||Heartland Sweetner||Associated Brands|
|Tea||Harris Tea||Sturm Foods|
|Vegetables - Canned||Lakeside Foods||Seneca Foods|
|Vegetables - Frozen||Lakeside Foods||Bybee|
|Vinegar||Mizkan America||LiDestri Foods|
Non-Food Category Colonels
|Antacids/Digestive Aids||Raritan Pharmaceuticals||TEVA Pharmaceuticals|
|Baby Diapers||Associated Hygienic Products||Valor Brands|
|Baby Products||Garcoa Labs||Vi-Jon Laboratories|
|Bath & Body||Garcoa Labs||Chemolee Corp.|
|Batteries||Fuji Novell Batteries||Powermax Battery|
|Cleaning Aids||Clean Ones||Sun Products|
|Cold Remedies||Tower Laboratories||OHM Labs|
|Cosmetics||US Nonwovens||220 Laboratories|
|Cotton||US Cotton||United Exchange|
|Eyecare||KC Pharmaceuticals||Bausch & Lomb|
|Facial Care||Garcoa Laboratories||Nice-Pak Products|
|Feminine Care||Albaad Rostam||Rockline Industries|
|First Aid Products||Vi-Jon Laboratories||US Cotton|
|Foils/Wraps||Reynold's Packaging Group||Durable Foil|
|Food/Trash Bags||Presto Products||Webster Industries|
|Footcare||Tower Laboratories||Garcoa Labs|
|Haircare||Vi-Jon Laboratories||United Exchange|
|Home Diagnostics||Mansfield Medical Dist.||Lumiscope Company|
|Home Fragrances||Delta Brands||Stonewall Kitchen|
|Household Cleaning||Delta Brands||Clean Ones|
|Laundry Products||Sun Products||US Nonwovens|
|Light Bulbs||Feit Electric||Linkage Technologies|
|Oral care||Tower Laboratories||OraTech|
|Paper Products - Napkins/Towels||U.S. Alliance Paper||Global Tissue Group|
|Paper Products - Office/Other||Huhtamaki||Aspen Products|
|Paper Products - Tissues||Clearwater Paper||Cascades Tissue Group|
|Personal Care||Essential Labs||US Nonwovens|
|Pet Food||Simmons Pet Food||Camerican International|
|Pet Supplies||Simmons Pet Food||Winston Company|
|Plastic Cups/Bowls/Utensils||Dart Container||Solo Cup|
|Plastic Storage||Presto Products||Webster Industries|
|Pre-Moistened Wipes||Nice-Pak Products||Diamond Wipes|
|Shaving Products||KAI-Universal Group||Personna/American Safety Razor|
|Skin Care||Garcoa Laboratories||Sun Laboratories|
|Vitamins/Nutritional Supplements||Century Foods||BestSweet|