News Room

GMA Honors Hormel Foods and Nando’s PERi-PERi with 2017 Innovation Awards

GMA Press Contact

Rosie Hilmer

office: 202-295-3937

(White Sulfur Springs, WV) The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) today honored Hormel Foods and Nando’s PERi-PERi with the 2017 CPG Awards for Innovation and Creativity and presented its Hall of Achievement Award to Ken Powell of General Mills and Bob Mariano of Roundy’s, Inc.

The awards were presented today at the GMA Leadership Forum at The Greenbrier in White Sulfur Springs, West Virginia. The Hall of Achievement Award, which is GMA’s highest honor, recognizes the service and extraordinary contributions of distinguished food, beverage and consumer packaged goods industry leaders. This year’s award was given to Powell, who retired earlier this year as the president and CEO at General Mills, and Mariano, the former Roundy’s chairman, president and CEO.

“Ken Powell’s leadership at General Mills has been marked by listening to consumers, driving innovation, and committing to a sustainable future for the world around us. He brought that same steadiness and sensible leadership to his role as chairman of the GMA Board of Directors,” said Pamela G. Bailey, GMA’s president and CEO. “Bob Mariano’s 50-year career in the grocery industry earned him a reputation as the consummate merchant, someone with an uncanny ability to listen to and understand his shoppers. We are honored to present them with GMA’s Hall of Achievement Award.”

The winners of the CPG Awards for Innovation and Creativity are selected each year by the GMA Advisory Council in recognition for their creativity and willingness to take risks, resulting in measurable results and significant impact on the industry.

“GMA member companies are continuously seeking better ways to connect with consumers and meet evolving consumer desires. The successes of Hormel and Nando’s PERi-PERi exemplify the innovation and creativity seen throughout our industry,” Bailey said. 

Hormel Foods was recognized for SKIPPY® P.B. Bites, which were created to meet a challenge by company leadership to take peanut butter out of the jar. SKIPPY® P.B. Bites, the first in its category of peanut butter snacks, initially launched in 2015 in two varieties – pretzel and double peanut butter – that exceeded expected sales. The SKIPPY® P.B. Bites successful launch aligned with one of the company’s key growth pillars – solving for the on-the-go eating occasion – and has set up the company for further growth in the snacking business, with the addition of granola and graham cracker options. 

“Quality and innovation are two guiding principles at Hormel Foods that help the company meet consumers’ needs and satisfy appetites around the world,” said Scott Aakre, vice president of consumer insights and corporate innovation at Hormel Foods. “Accomplishments such as SKIPPY P.B. Bites inspire us to continue to put the consumer first as we look for food solutions that reimagine convenience, give consideration to personalized nutrition and respond to consumers’ demands for food adventure.”

Nando’s PERi-PERi won for its launch in Atlanta of the grocery option for its famous sauce, a Southern African blend of chilies, garlic, sun-ripened lemon, fresh herbs, and spices. People enjoy Nando’s PERi-PERi sauce in its restaurants in 26 markets across the world – including Chicago and Washington D.C. in the U.S. – but the company wanted to launch its bottled sauce to consumers in cities where it did not have restaurants. It chose Atlanta for a test market, and used a combination of targeted sampling, strategic seeding, influencer gifting, and a series of pop‐up experiences to gain widespread social media sharing and earned media coverage that was supplemented by a trade marketing program.

“Around the world, we have seen that as soon as people try our famous little PERi-PERi from South Africa, it’s love at first bite,” said Paulo Oliveira, Head of Nando’s Grocery North America. “Our fresh flavor and spice speak for themselves, but it’s not easy to get samples to everyone in the US, so we’ve had to get creative in our approach. We are excited and humbled to see we’ve been so positively received by staying true to our brand and heritage."

In addition, Chad Mallory, a rising senior at Malone University in Ohio, was presented with the 2017 ENACTUS Emerging Leader Award.


The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) is the trade organization representing the world’s leading food, beverage and consumer products companies and associated partners. The U.S. food, beverage and consumer packaged goods industry plays a unique role as the single largest U.S. manufacturing employment sector, with 2.1 million jobs in 30,000 communities across the country that deliver products vital to the wellbeing of people in our nation and around world. Founded in 1908, GMA has a primary focus on product safety, science-based public policies and industry initiatives that seek to empower people with the tools and information they need to make informed choices and lead healthier lives. For more information, visit