Innovation Award Winners Take Center Stage at NY Produce Show Keynote Breakfast December 6 at the Javits Center

We are thrilled to honor the inaugural winners in a pivotal Produce Business award series we launched this year to renew our nearly four-decade mission to increase overall produce consumption.  

Join industry leaders gathered from around the world, as we present these, and other coveted awards to those who exemplify excellence in the produce business at the keynote breakfast on Wednesday December 6, revving the full day of trade show activities at the 14th annual New York Produce Show at the Javits Center.  

This new award series recognizes select industry trailblazers, nominated across retail and foodservice categories, who brilliantly sell and market fresh produce to consumers, and foster critical partnerships to ingeniously move the needle on consumption.

To further elevate their achievements, we showcase their prize-winning strategies and invaluable insights in Produce Business cover stories throughout the year.

We hope to inspire translatable programs and newfound industry collaborations as we work together to increase fresh fruit and vegetable sales and long-term behavioral change in people’s health and well-being.

Here is a preview:

Produce Business introduced the award series revealing the Most Innovative Independent Retailer, which proved a tight contest between three unique independents advancing impactful produce strategies in competitive marketplaces. Thus, we named a winner and two finalists:

Most Innovative Independent Retailer

Sendik’s Food Markets

PB February COVER STORY: Old School Meets New School: Studying Sendik’s A+ Formula
Brian Penfield, Produce Director

Finalist, Most Innovative Independent Retailer

Kingma’s Market

PB April Award Story: Kingma’s Kingpin: Produce Reigns
Former Kroger and SpartanNash executive reengineers this stand-alone independent to co-exist among fierce competition

Accepting the Award:
Alan Hartline, Owner

Finalist, Most Innovative Independent Retailer

The Turnip Truck

PB March Award Story: The Turnip Truck Grows in Tandem with Nashville:
Wholesome produce is the gateway, with that spirited southern idiom, ‘I didn’t just fall off the turnip truck,’ for good measure.

Accepting the Award:
Kat Britt, Produce Buyer

Merchandiser of the Year

Mike Roberts
VP of Produce Operations
Harps Food Stores

PB April COVER STORY: Maestro of Merchandising
Mike Roberts crescendos sales, consumption, and community health, composing a concerto of industry partners, some pulling at his heartstrings.

Most Innovative Dining Outlet

Bon Appetit Management Company

PB July COVER STORY: Plant-Forward Avant-Garde

Accepting the Award:
Chris Lenza
Executive Chef, Wellness Plant Forward Initiatives


A fitting finale to this year’s inaugural Innovation Award’s series to increase produce consumption, we are proud to announce the Global Marketing Innovation Award winner at this year’s keynote breakfast.  This will coincide with the Produce Business December issue featuring the Award cover story.

Meet and share insights with this year’s winners at the 2023 New York Produce Show.

Nominations are now open for 2024!

Most Innovative Independent Retailer
Merchandiser of the Year
Most Innovative Dining Outlet
Global Marketing Innovation Award