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South Australian fruiterer picks up national honour for the second year

Adelaide Fresh Fruiterers in Morphett Vale has taken out the ‘A better choice!’ Retailer of the Year, People’s Choice Award for the second year.

Fresh Markets Australia (FMA) and the Central Markets Association of Australia (CMAA) announced the 2022 winners, which is the first national program designed to encourage consumers to shop for fresh produce at their local independent fruit and vegetable retailers. Dino Labbozzetta from Adelaide Fresh Fruiterers Morphett Vale won both the South Australian state award as well as picked up the national honour.

“Firstly, thanks to the staff, without them we wouldn’t have made this happen and to the customers, it comes from the trust they put in us that we’ll have great quality and great service so I want to thank them very much," he said. "Thanks to everyone who participated, thanks to ‘A better choice!’, we wouldn’t be doing this without everyone.”

‘A better choice!’ National Program Manager, James Patrick noted this year has been full of challenges for the Australian Fruit and Vegetable Industry, but the independent retailers with some good old-fashioned hard work, have dug deep and kept the fruit and vegetable supply chain going strong and provided the best produce Australia has to offer for their local communities.

“This year, we are delighted to announce the winners from each state that participate in the national initiative, as well as the top three nationally, who demonstrated excellence within their industry and received the most nominations overall from their customers. This award recognises the efforts and significance of independent retailers nationwide. Many of which are owned and run by families who are a large part of the heart and soul of this industry and have been for generations. This award recognises the hard work and passion our retailers have for our industry, and demonstrates support for the ‘A better choice!’ initiative as it continues to grow for years to come.”

The Retailer of the Year, People’s Choice Award is designed to highlight the stores that received the most nominations from their local community as their favourite store, in celebration of the quality, freshness and service provided at Aussie Independent fruit and veg shops. This year over 16,000 shoppers nominated 428 individual stores as their favourite fruit and veg shop, and the event was hosted by Masterchef Winner Callum Hann.

“It’s great to see the industry come together to celebrate the hard work our retailers have done to continue to give people excellent quality fresh produce every day," Mr Hann said. "The industry has been going through some pretty tough times over the last few years, and it’s great to give recognition to those that go above and beyond and stand out within the industry. I believe it’s important to support independent retailers because it’s good to know you’re supporting the little guys, and you’re always guaranteed exceptional service and great quality produce.”

Second place nationally and Queensland winner is awarded to Erbacher’s Fruit and Vegetables on the Sunshine Coast. Third Place nationally and the Victorian winner is awarded to Arnolds Fruit and Veg located in Wodonga. The state winner for New South Wales is awarded to Trims Fresh, Merrylands. The state winner for Western Australia is awarded to Spudshed, Midlands.

“It feels amazing to win this award, we’re fifth generation fruit market here in Wodonga, it’s so exciting," Louise Arnold from Arnold’s Fruit Market said. "We come to work every day thinking about what can we do next and how we can engage and be relevant and this prize has said we’re doing everything right. I think we’re a favourite here in Wodonga because we’re a family and a lot of people can understand us, they know us in the community, or they knew our parents or our grandparents or our great grandparents. Our community is also our family and winning this award makes it all worth it."

The joint FMA and CMAA initiative supports more than 700 retailers across Australia.

Source: Fresh Markets Australia press release

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