Significant Contribution to Food Safety Award

The Significant Contribution to Food Safety Award recognises a person or group who has helped improve food safety in New Zealand. The 2021 award winner is Denver McGregor from New Zealand King Salmon Co. Ltd. The 2022 award will open in February.

About the award

Sponsored by New Zealand Food Safety, the Significant Contribution to Food Safety Award is part of the New Zealand Institute of Food Science and Technology (NZIFST) Awards.

Significant Contribution to Food Safety Award recognises developments in a process or operation – either by an organisation, team or individual – to improve food safety across, or in a particular part of, the food chain.

Nominations for the 2022 award will open in February. You can nominate individuals, teams, and/or organisations. Self-nominations are also accepted.

We welcome nominations that can demonstrate food safety improvements in any of the following areas:

  • science and research
  • equipment or processing technology
  • product or packaging development
  • industry best practice
  • building and maintaining an effective food safety culture (such as staff engagement, leadership or continual improvement).

This could include developing or improving a food safety process or operation. It could be in one sector, or across a few sectors, and is not time specific.

The award will be announced at the 2022 NZIFST Conference. The Significant Contribution to Food Safety Award winner will receive a trophy and a 12-month membership to the NZIFST.

2022 NZIFST Conference

2021 award winner

Minister for Food Safety, Dr Ayesha Verrall, with Denver McGregor from New Zealand King Salmon, and deputy director-general New Zealand Food Safety Vince Arbuckle.

Denver McGregor from New Zealand King Salmon is New Zealand Food Safety’s 2021 Significant Contribution to Food Safety Award winner. Nelson-based Denver has been recognised for his commitment to maintaining a great food safety culture within his company and his contributions to Listeria monocytogenes management in the field.

Denver and his food safety team have been determined to find out as much as they can about this evolving pathogen to continue to provide safe and suitable products for their consumers. In 2018, Denver was the first in the New Zealand seafood industry to pioneer a Listeria Strategy Programme, involving genome sequencing, to better understand Listeria monocytogenes, its occurrence within the New Zealand King Salmon manufacturing environment, and find proven methods to control it.

This programme enables New Zealand King Salmon to accurately match a strain of Listeria back to the original source. The company is now able to use this technology and research findings to create methods to eliminate Listeria from the manufacturing environment.

Previous award winners

Previous winners of the Award are Rosie Waller (2019), Professor Nigel French (2018), and Dr Lesley Rhodes (2017).

The 2020 Significant Contribution to Food Safety Award was presented to Aaron Dodunski (Mobile Beef Packers). In addition, 2020 commended mentions were presented to Roger Harris (Safe Food Pro), the iMonitor team, and Paul Wilson (Chomp).

Bryan Wilson (left) from New Zealand Food Safety with 2020 Significant Contribution to Food Safety Award winner Aaron Dodunski.
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