Snaffling Pig is a UK foodie favourite as start-up business is crowned winner of Foodpreneur 2017

A pork scratchings business is the winner of Virgin StartUp’s Foodpreneur 2017, a competition run in partnership with intu to find the country’s best new food and drink business.

Nick Coleman and Andy Allen have been running Snaffling Pig since 2014 but are already suppliers for the UK’s largest pub companies and secured investment for their business on BBC 2’s Dragons’ Den last year.

They beat almost 200 other food and drink entrepreneurs to be named the winners of Virgin StartUp’s Foodpreneur 2017 and have won the unique opportunity to open a shop for six weeks free of charge at intu Lakeside, one of the UK’s biggest and most popular shopping destinations, later this year. They will also receive mentoring from both intu and Virgin StartUp executives.

Celebrity judges Levi Roots (Reggae Reggae Sauce), pork_scratchingPaul Lindley (Ella’s Kitchen), Alice Liveing (founder of Clean Eating Alice) and Jim Cregan (Jimmy’s Iced Coffees) selected Andy and Nick as winners of Foodpreneur 2017 in front of a live audience on Tuesday.

Andy and Nick said: “We’re over the moon to be crowned winners of Virgin StartUp and intu’s Foodpreneur 2017. The experience has been amazing and we’re excited to use the opportunity to take Snaffling Pig to the next level in the UK.

We’ve had an amazing adventure the last couple of years and love talking about it, and whilst we’re not really ones for chasing recognition, it is lovely when you receive it like this. Meeting the other finalists reiterated that there are some great, passionate people in the food and drink start-up space right now.”

The competition is in its third year and previous alumni include Pip & Nut and Cauli Rice. Both businesses have gone on to enjoy further successes including listings in major supermarkets such as Tesco and Waitrose whilst building recognisable brands in the food and drink sector.

This year’s competition has seen intu and Virgin combining their brands, knowledge and expertise to help aspiring food and drink entrepreneurs from across the UK.

David Fischel, intu chief executive, said: “Foodpreneur 2017 has created the perfect opportunity for the UK’s most creative and innovative entrepreneurs. We are looking forward to welcoming Snaffling Pig to intu Lakeside which will help them to flourish and gain access to millions of intu customers. We are delighted to have worked with Virgin StartUp to provide an opportunity to support up and coming entrepreneurs and find the next wave of new ideas.”

Levi Roots, said: “It was a hard decision to make but Snaffling Pig blew us away as their energy, flair and passion made them a clear favourite.”

Mei Shui, managing director of Virgin StartUp said: “This year’s competition was by far the hardest to call. The start-up food and drink sector has gone through something of a boom these last few years and we’ve seen a real increase in the number of food and drink businesses entering the market and an increase in the quality. This was clearly evident in the level of quality of this year’s entries and finalists and well done to the eventual winner, Snaffling Pig.”

Runners-up of the competition were Tuk Tuk Chai, Love Cocoa and Love Corn.

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