INTERNATIONAL. The Moodie Report and sister title The Foodie Report has opened nominations for the highly anticipated 2017 Airport Food & Beverage (FAB) Awards, with a submission deadline of Friday 24 March.

FAB-2017-358x662The awards are a cornerstone of the FAB Conference & Awards event, which will this year be held in Toronto, Canada, on 21-23 June, hosted by Toronto Pearson International Airport.

Travel restaurateurs OTG, SSP, Areas, Autogrill and HMSHost are Platinum Partners of the event.

The awards celebrate the best in travel-related dining around the world, and this year feature a slimmed-down line-up of 16 categories, including several new and exciting awards that put the emphasis firmly on people, product, creativity and innovation.

Besides the global winners, regional awards will also be named for Europe; Asia Pacific; the Americas; and Middle East, India & Africa.

The judging criteria is available at along with hotel and conference registration, which has now opened.

Outlets nominated must have been trading in 2016. The judges this year will be focusing particularly on five key criteria: Innovation, Performance, Quality, Service, plus Suitability for the Travel Channel.

The judging panel will include David King, Founder of The David King Partnership; Martin Moodie, Founder & Chairman of The Moodie Davitt Report; Anders Barsøe, CEO of  Letz Sushi (a former chef and previously Copenhagen Airports Category Manager – Food & Beverage and Convenience), plus guest judges for specific awards.

New for 2017 are:

  • New Food & Beverage Concept of the Year

This award will be presented to a new (in 2016) F&B concept that represents true, not token, innovation – something that is bold, daring and different. It could relate to any aspect of airport F&B, as we do not wish to be overly prescriptive in setting the parameters.

  • Customer Service Initiative of the Year

We want to bring FAB back to the very roots of the hospitality business – people and food. Customers are at the heart of any business, and service is a key driver of consumer loyalty and commercial success. We have witnessed many original and innovative service initiatives during our travels: so much so that it is appropriate for us to recognise the best customer service initiative of the year at this year’s FAB Awards.

  • #AiroftheDog – The Great Airport Cocktail Award in association with Copper Dog

Sponsored by newly launched Copper Dog blended Speyside malt whisky, this is a hugely exciting addition to the FAB line-up, which puts the emphasis squarely on people, on panache, on passion and, of course, on product. We’re looking for the best original cocktail (made with Copper Dog of course) created with the airport environment in mind – one that captures the eclectic, exciting airport world in concept, name, suitability, taste and presentation.

Excitingly, the finalists (who must work in airport F&B) will all be flown to Toronto courtesy of Copper Dog to participate in a ‘shake or stir-off’, and the ultimate winner will be flown to Speyside, Scotland, staying at the beautiful Craigellachie Hotel. [ [Bartenders/mixologists, you’ll need to register for this award to receive the most crucial ingredient, your own bottle of Copper Dog – see].

  • ‘La spirito de vojaĝado’ Award (‘The spirit of travel’)

New and very exciting for FAB 2017, ‘La spirito de vojaĝado’ (meaning ‘The spirit of travel’ in Esperanto, the universal language) is an award that will recognise the original dish created especially for FAB 2017 that best captures the essence of international travel. Created by chefs, judged by chefs.

  • Food & Beverage Disruptor of the Year

We live in a fast-changing world where so-called ‘Disruptors’ have challenged, and sometimes destroyed, the status quo. Forbes magazine describes a disruptor as an individual or organisation that creates businesses, products and services that are better – sometimes less expensive and certainly more creative, useful and impactful – than the prevailing norm. Think Uber, AirBnB, Netflix, Amazon.

The judges will be looking for those which have dared to be different, dared to take on the F&B establishment, and succeeded.

The other awards are:

  • Airport Coffee, Non-alcoholic Beverage Shop of the Year
  • Airport ‘Food to Go’ Offer of the Year
  • Airport Bar of the Year
  • Airport Wine Bar of the Year
  • Airport Casual Dining Restaurant of the Year
  • Airport Fine Dining Restaurant of the Year
  • Airport Food Hall of the Year
  • New Food & Beverage Concept of the Year
  • F&B Marketing & Promotional Campaign of the Year
  • Individual F&B Offer of the Year in a Railway Station
  • Airport Food & Beverage Offer Best Reflecting Sense of Place
  • Airport Food & Beverage Offer of the Year

Judges’ Special Awards

One or more awards may be made at the discretion of the Judges.