Deadline extended for Ohio Signature Food Contest

TOLEDO – The Center for Innovative Food Technology stills plan on conducting its Ohio Signature Food Contest.

The deadline has been extended until June 30.

Sponsored by the CIFT and Ohio Farm Bureau Federation, the contest will showcase new, innovative products from across the state.

“Our experience and industry feedback indicates an increasing desire for local foods by both consumers and retailers,” stated Rebecca A. Singer, president and CEO of CIFT. “This contest serves as a platform to help fill that appetite for ‘local’ in an innovative and creative way while assisting in launching the next signature food item for Ohio.”

Contestants can complete an online form available on the website, outlining the basic details of their food product, and food industry experts will judge each entry. Emphasis is placed on products integrating Ohio ingredients when possible.

The winner will receive technical and business development assistance to help advance a product to the marketplace, as well as production of product to be used for consumer feedback. Production will be available at the Northwest Ohio Cooperative Kitchen in Bowling Green, a nonprofit commercial facility that educates and advises new and growing businesses, provides access to a commercially-licensed kitchen, networking opportunities with other similar entities, and technical assistance.

Products do not need to be fully designed or ready for market, rather an ability to communicate a specific vision. The technical assistance aspect of the award will provide guidance toward a finished product.

Since 1995, CIFT has provided a blend of business solutions, innovation and technical expertise to the food processing, agricultural and manufacturing sectors. These services are designed to enhance the economic performance of the industries and create new jobs. CIFT is a partner of the Ohio Manufacturing Extension Partnership, designed to help small to mid-sized manufacturers in Ohio become leaders in their industry.