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Save-On-Foods, Galleria Supermarket among winners at retailer awards

“Outstanding” Independent grocers recognized at CFIG ceremony

The 55th annual Canadian Independent Grocer of the Year awards, presented Tuesday night, highlighted some of the best grocers in the country.

Former PepsiCo executive Blair Ruelens.

Former PepsiCo executive Blair Ruelens.

Handed out at a gala dinner, the awards capped off the Grocery Innovations Canada conference held at the Toronto Congress Centre.

The 2017 National Gold Award winners for Top Independent Grocer of the Year were Save-On-Foods Heritage, Calgary (in the large surface grocer category); Stong’s Market, Northwoods, North Vancouver (medium surface); Oak Ridges Food Market, Richmond Hill, Ont. (small surface); and Galleria Supermarket, York Mills, Toronto, (specialty category, David C. Parsons Award).

Powell’s Supermarket of Bay Roberts, N.L. was this year’s recipient of The Arnold Rands Heritage Award, which is presented to the year’s best privately owned, multi-generational store that has been in the same family for a least two generations and in the same community for 35 years.

The Country Grocer owner François Bouchard.

The Country Grocer owner François Bouchard.

Other special awards handed out during the evening were Life Member Awards, which this year went to François Bouchard, owner of The Country Grocer and Blair Ruelens, formerly a PepsiCo exec. Both men are longtime supporters of CFIG.

Ward Hanlon, CFIG’s vice-president of industry relations, was honoured with a special Spirit of the Independent Award. The award recognizes those who have made significant contributions to the growth of the entrepreneurial spirit of Canadian grocers. Hanlon has announced he will be retiring from CFIG this year.

Click here for a full list of award winners

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