Best Bites

Best Bites Food Awards Program

Mornington Peninsula Shire's food awards program – Best Bites -  assesses local food businesses on measures they are taking to provide safe and healthy food; use environmentally sustainable business practices; and provide safe and accessible food premises.

Businesses that meet the requirements will be featured in the Best Bites Food Guide and are eligible for the Best Bites Food Awards. All local food businesses can take part in Best Bites, and can to apply for assessment in the areas of:

  • Access for All

  • Nutrition & Healthy Eating

  • Waste & Recycling

  • Energy & Water Efficiency

  • Tobacco & Alcohol Compliance

The program was developed by a steering committee of food businesses, consumers and traders groups and included representatives from Peninsula Health, All Abilities Consultative Committee, Western Port Biosphere Reserve, Monash University, SecondBite, Heart Foundation, Mornington Peninsula Produce and Sustainability Victoria. 

2018 Best Bites Food Guide

 

The 2018 Best Bites Food Guide features the most outstanding food businesses on the Mornington Peninsula in the areas of nutrition, tobacco and alcohol, waste and recycling, energy and water efficiency and access for all.  The Shire and the All Abilities Consultative Committee has also created a video promoting accessible, safe and sustainable food businesses on the Mornington Peninsula.

 

The 2018 Best Bites Food Guide - which lists more than 400 local food businesses serving safe, healthy and sustainable food - is now available free from Shire customer service centres, libraries and tourism centres and online as a searchable directory at Best Bites Food Guide

 

Download: 2018 Best Bites Food Guide(PDF, 4MB)

 

Accessible Microsoft Word Version 2018 Best Bites Accessible Version.doc(DOC, 58KB)

Nominations and Applications

Nominations remain open to local food businesses for the 2018 Best Bites Food Awards. 

Consumers can nominate their favourite food business for the Best Bites Food Awards by emailing food@mornpen.vic.gov.au

Please contact the Shire's Environmental Health Team for information and self-help checklists to assist you apply for the Awards. 

Meet the Best Bites Judges

Mornington Peninsula Shire and the Best Bites Steering Committee is committed to assisting food businesses and consumers through the Best Bites Food Guide and the Best Bites Food Awards.

 

An independent judging panel is in place for the Best Bites Food Awards including representatives from program partners and supporters including Peninsula Health, Western Port Biosphere Reserve, MP Tourism, All Abilities Consultative Committee, Sustainability Victoria, Monash University, and Mornington Peninsula Shire.

 

All of the judges are volunteers who kindly donate their time and expertise to support Best Bites. Without their support the Best Bites Awards would not be possible

 

The judges for each Best Bites category have great knowledge and experience in the program areas of access and inclusion, nutrition, tobacco control, and sustainability. The judges in the 2017 Best Bites Food Awards were:

 

Innovation Category:

Dr Andrew Monk, Lisa Brassington

 

Restaurant:

Andie Murphy, Josh Pereira, David Garnock, Claire Hogan

 

Café:

Kaitlyn Anderson, Melissa Burrage, Karen Fankhauser (All Abilities Consultative Committee)

 

Take Away:

Libby Kent (All Abilities Consultative Committee), Cecelia Witton (Western Port Biosphere Reserve), Peter O’Brien

 

Aged Care:

Lucy Allinson (Climate Ready), Peninsula Health dieticians

 

Bed and Breakfast:

Katherine Cooper (MP Tourism), Peninsula Health dieticians

 

Child Care/School Canteen:

Adam Shalekoff, Peter O’Brien

 

Supermarket:

Nick Bailey (Sustainability Victoria)

 

Judging for the next Best Bites Food Awards will commence in July 2018.

 

If you would like to assist as a judge for these awards please email obripm@mornpen.vic.gov.au.

 

Many of tthe current judges are featured with profiles as follows:

 

Dr Andrew Monk

 

·        Chairman of Australian Organic

·        Australian Organic provides organic and bio-dynamic certification for all categories of organic and biodynamic farming and food production

·        Chairman of Enervest Pty Ltd - Australian leader and innovator in solar and battery design and installation for commercial, rural and domestic dwellings

·        Owner and managing director Mulching Technologies Pty Ltd

·        Adjunct Associate Professor, University of New England

·        International Certification Standards Committee member

·        University of Wollongong, Ph.D Ecologically Sustainable Development in Agriculture

·        University of Melbourne BSc (Hons)

·        Skills and experience in sustainable development, agribusiness and horticulture

Lisa Brassington

 

·        Born and raised in North East Victoria. Currently on the Mornington Peninsula.

·        Moved to Melbourne for University education, professional career and happily married.

·        Family background in crop and stock farming, dairy, animal health and agribusiness.

·        Agricultural interests include Horticulture, PeriUrban farming, Australian produce, and Water security for high quality and healthy farms. Lisa has an intuitive ecosystem, water and land management understanding. Her passion is to invest in environmentally sensitive farming.

·        Lisa’s other passions, are Ag2Ag Tourism, Agritourism via love attending Farmers Markets, and all good food festivals. Her goal is to eat her way around every Australian food region and farmer’s market, to enjoy the variety of amazing Australian Produce.

·        Lisa is a communication’s specialist and highly skilled professional in spatial infrastructure, traditional telco systems, multi technology and social media. Her years of product innovation and SME clientele management, with Telecom/Telstra, and AgTech, is a perfect mix, for her two Judging roles, in Best Bites categories of Innovation and Primary Producers.

·        Born and raised in North East Victoria. Currently on the Mornington Peninsula.

·        Moved to Melbourne for University education, professional career and happily married.

·        Family background in crop and stock farming, dairy, animal health and agribusiness.

·        Agricultural interests include Horticulture, PeriUrban farming, Australian produce, and Water security for high quality and healthy farms. Lisa has an intuitive ecosystem, water and land management understanding. Her passion is to invest in environmentally sensitive farming.

·        Lisa’s other passions, are Ag2Ag Tourism, Agritourism via love attending Farmers Markets, and all good food festivals. Her goal is to eat her way around every Australian food region and farmer’s market, to enjoy the variety of amazing Australian Produce.

·        Lisa is a communication’s specialist and highly skilled professional in spatial infrastructure, traditional telco systems, multi technology and social media. Her years of product innovation and SME clientele management, with Telecom/Telstra, and AgTech, is a perfect mix, for her two Judging roles, in Best Bites categories of Innovation and Primary Producers.

 

Current

ú   Lisa now works at PENINSULA FRESH ORGANICS in Quality, Audits, and Land Management –and looks forward to getting her hands dirtier and driving more tractors.

ú   Volunteers as a:

o    2018 Women on Farm’s Gathering – MornPen Organising Committee – Communication role

o    2017 VFF Peninsula Branch – Committee Member

ú   Received the following awards:

o    2017 Women in Horticulture – National Excellence award recipient

o    2017 RIRDC Rural Women’s Awards Finalist – Victoria

o    2017 UTAS Masterclass in Horticulture - Scholarship recipient

o   2017 Grower Success Annual Stories – AUSVEG Annual R&D Levy Publication - Education recipient

ú  Lisa has had her story published in many local press articles, including industry journals.

 

Qualifications / Memberships

ú    Women in Sustainable Agriculture business group – (WiSA) PPWCMA

ú    Victorian Rural Women’s Network (VRWN)

ú       VFF / RASV / AUSVEG / HORT INNOVATION / Australian Organics – Memberships

ú    Biosphere Foundation - Western Port Catchment Committee (WPCC) member

ú       Freshcare FSQ4/ENV3, HACCP, ACO, EnviroVeg and Water Stewardship trained.

ú    Many other formal and industry qualifications

ú   RMIT (Melbourne / Vietnam) Bachelor of Applied Science (BUrbRegPlan) (2007 1st Class Honours)

ú   Mental Health First Aid trained volunteer (https://mhfa.com.au/research/mhfa-course-evaluations)

ú   Workplace Trainer and Assessor (Melbourne University CERT IV)

 

Previous education, roles and  volunteering

·        VICTORIAN AGRIBUSINESS COUNCIL (2015 Summit Organising Committee)

·        National Rural Women’s Coalition (2016 E-Leaders participant)

·        MORNPEN SHIRE – Tootagrook Wetland Project Officer and Rural Water Officer – Water Sensitive Rural Land design project (Melbourne Water partnership)

·        BUNYIP FOOD BELT – Irrigation Scheme Secretariat (2009-2012) (MornPen, Cardinia and Casey)

·        MORNPEN SHIRE, YARRA RANGES, FRANKSTON, CARDINIA (incl CASEY) - Strategic Town Planner - Green Wedge and PeriUrban land and water management

·        TELSTRA - National Workplace technical trainer and assessor – Communications specialist, including National disability and access, Executive Management Skills and innovation testing and new product development.

 

     Andie Murphy - Peninsula Health

Why did you get involved in judging for the Best Bites program?

 

I am a Best Bites Committee member and as an ex-smoker I have firsthand experience of the harmful effects of tobacco use.  Therefore tobacco control, specifically the prevention of uptake of smoking by children and young people is a health promotion priority for me. 

It is for this reason; I am very excited about and committed to working with the Mornington Peninsula Shire to create safe and healthy environments for young people and their families. 

Which Best Bites category do you judge for?

 

I judge  the Tobacco and Alcohol category

Tell us about your background and how it relates to the criteria you judge for

I was born into a hospitality family, bought up in family pubs and spent 28years in the industry before I chose to step into Health Promotion.

Knowing and respecting Health Promotion and the hospitality industry has helped me immensely.

Health & wellbeing is a huge passion of mine as is the availability of great food & venues in our local community that are inclusive of everyone’s needs.

What do you think are the important factors needed for fulfilment of this criteria?

Commitment to the community as a whole and knowledge of health issues. When Vendors have an understanding of why we are focused on the health & wellbeing of the community it helps support the positive messages we as a collective are communicating.

What do you see as the benefits for businesses that get involved in the Best Bites program?

The Best Bites program assists local food & beverage business in becoming a “preferred choice” for patrons when deciding where to take their families.

It also assists in lifting their profile, and word of mouth goes a long way especially in our community

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Josh Pereira - Peninsula Health

Question

Answer

Why did you get involved in judging for the Best Bites program?

 

I am interested in increasing the healthy food options available for people to choose when they are dining out. All the Best Bites businesses I have met do a great job in making sure their food is not just delicious, but also healthy and fresh.

Which Best Bites category do you judge for?

 

Healthy Eating

Tell us about your background and how it relates to the criteria you judge for

I studied Nutrition and Dietetics at Monash University and became an Accredited Practicing Dietitian through the Dietitian’s Association of Australia. I’ve spent the last 10 years working with Peninsula Health to help improve access to healthy food in our community and I was very excited to get involved with the Best Bites program when it first started.

What do you think are the important factors needed for fulfilment of this criteria?

The most important part about eating healthy is to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Businesses that include fruits and vegetables in their meals help their customers get the important nutrients they need to sustain a healthy lifestyle.

What do you see as the benefits for businesses that get involved in the Best Bites program?

Businesses that get involved with Best Bites have an opportunity to showcase their efforts to the community and it gives them a better profile with prospective customers. There are plenty of supports available to help businesses move to more healthy and sustainable practices and together we can help to make the Mornington Peninsula a destination of choice for people wanting to enjoy a fulfilling lifestyle.

What do you see as the benefits of the Best Bites program for the community?

 

The ability to choose businesses based on healthy and sustainable practices puts the power in the hands of the consumer. They are able to easily recognise businesses that are not simply interested in making a profit, but are also mindful of the community in which they operate.

Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?

 

The Mornington Peninsula Shire should be commended for their efforts in establishing and continuing this ground-breaking program. The Environmental Health Officers have shown outstanding leadership in getting local agencies and businesses to work together to achieve important improvements for our community.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Claire Hogan – Access Advocate

Why did you get involved in judging for the Best Bites program?

Because I believe that accessible eating venues benefit the whole community

Which Best Bites category do you judge for?

Access

Tell us about your background and how it relates to the criteria you judge for

I have low vision ( legally blind) and I have sociallised and worked with people with many disabilities. I enjoy a coffee and a tasty healthy meal. I have worked with local government on access issues for 30 years

What do you think are the important factors needed for fulfilment of this criteria?

To be accessible for a wide variety of people with physical challenges including mothers with pushers. Staff training is just as important as physical access; so that people can enjoy a meal without being patronised or embarrassed

What do you see as the benefits for businesses that get involved in the Best Bites program?

If business fulfil all the Best Bites Criteria they will win or be commended and that will attract more visitors and locals.

What do you see as the benefits of the Best Bites program for the community?

 

The more accessible premises we have means more choices of venue particularly for careers. When a premises is well lit with low noise levels and easy signage- this helps everybody.

Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?

 

Better access means a more enjoyable experience for a wider range of people.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Karen Fankhauser – All Abilities Consultative Committee

Why did you get involved in judging for the Best Bites program?

 

I think it’s important to talk to venues about access.

Which Best Bites category do you judge for?

 

Accessibility

Tell us about your background and how it relates to the criteria you judge for

I’m on the All Abilities Consultative Committee. I have muscular dystrophy and use a wheelchair.

What do you think are the important factors needed for fulfilment of this criteria?

I think it helps to have a disability – I’ve learnt so much about different disabilities during my time on the committee. Because I was born with a disability, I think I have a lot of awareness around accessibility issues. Improving access helps people with a disability but also the wider community. 

What do you see as the benefits for businesses that get involved in the Best Bites program?

Talking with venues about disability helps give them simple ideas for improving access- ramps are good, but a great attitude is equally important. I can discuss my personal customer service experiences and share how important it is for staff to focus on me as a customer and not my disability.

What do you see as the benefits of the Best Bites program for the community?

 

Improving access to venues benefits mums with prams, older persons and the friends and families of people with a disability as they can enjoy going out together. It also help people with a disability feel like they belong in the community.

Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kaitlyn Anderson – Practicing Dietician

Why did you get involved in judging for the Best Bites program?

 

I had the opportunity to see how the program ran when working with the MPSC on university placement and thought it was a brilliant initiative. Since then I’ve been involved with judging and helped to conduct an evaluation of Best Bites.

Which Best Bites category do you judge for?

 

Nutrition

Tell us about your background and how it relates to the criteria you judge for

I’m a local dietitian, working in private practice across the Mornington Peninsula and Frankston. I’m passionate about seeing people take positive steps towards a better lifestyle.

What do you think are the important factors needed for fulfilment of this criteria?

I think it’s most important that food businesses offer fresh, healthy options and cater for different dietary needs. Plant-based diets (like the Mediterranean Diet) are a recipe for good health- and they certainly don’t need to be boring!

What do you see as the benefits for businesses that get involved in the Best Bites program?

This program is great because it not only gives a “pat on the back” to those businesses doing well in different areas but also provides support and resources for those who want to improve.

What do you see as the benefits of the Best Bites program for the community?

 

Best Bites is a recognition of those businesses that offer the “complete package” and are doing their bit to build a healthier, more sustainable community. It helps the public identify great places to eat!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Katherine Cooper – Mornington Peninsula Tourism

Why did you get involved in judging for the Best Bites program?

 

Because Peter OBrien asked me! But he probably asked me because I do a lot of work with the tourism industry J

Which Best Bites category do you judge for?

 

Bed and Breakfast

Tell us about your background and how it relates to the criteria you judge for

Before I worked at MPS I have worked for more than a decade with large tourism attractions that have a strong food element of their business – and  have been through the Food Safety Supervisors program and was involved in the Best bites program then. In my current role I have been part of the MPS team that entered and won Victorian and Australian Tourism Awards so I know the value of awards… and the hard work behind them!

What do you think are the important factors needed for fulfilment of this criteria?

Of particular interest are the areas of innovation and creativity in waste management and sustainability. Catering to all sorts of dietary requirements is also important. 

What do you see as the benefits for businesses that get involved in the Best Bites program?

There are so many opportunities to not only provide a safe food premises but to add great value to your business.

What do you see as the benefits of the Best Bites program for the community?

 

Having a high standard of food premises in the award program sets the benchmark for other businesses, and gives the community a guide that they can rely on for standards.

Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?

 

If you need a printed copy of the Best bites booklet – you can pick one up at the Visitor Information Centre in Dromana.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Lucy Allinson – Climate Ready

Why did you get involved in judging for the Best Bites program?

 

It is a worthy program. They were helping me with including the climate ready work in the judging criteria and collaboration and supporting each other in the Shire is important.

Which Best Bites category do you judge for?

 

Environmental

Tell us about your background and how it relates to the criteria you judge for

I have 10 years in running environmental programs for private, not for profit and government sectors. My specialism is energy-efficiency  and behaviour change but I also have been a food marketer for 20 years in the UK

What do you think are the important factors needed for fulfilment of this criteria?

Understanding of the impacts and prioritisation within the business to enable integration of a strategy into daily activities

What do you see as the benefits for businesses that get involved in the Best Bites program?

Best practice , pride amongst staff, media and ultimately improved profitability

What do you see as the benefits of the Best Bites program for the community?

 

Improved standards within food outlets across Mornington, safety classification of outlets for consumers, more profitable businesses and low carbon emissions in the shire.

Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?

 

It is a well organised program

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Melissa Burrage – Climate Change, Energy and Water Unit, MPSC

Why did you get involved in judging for the Best Bites program?

 

A representative from the Shire’s Climate Change Energy and Water team (previously Renewable Resources) has been involved in the judging from commencement. This brings direct expertise to the judging panel on best practice environmental management for a business.

At the time when I first became involved I was also working directly with food businesses regarding their wastewater management and improvements that they could make to reduce their impact on stormwater quality and  the quality of our waterways/beaches.

Which Best Bites category do you judge for?

 

Environmental Sustainability:

1.     Waste & Recycling

2.     Energy & Water

Tell us about your background and how it relates to the criteria you judge for

I work within the Climate Change, Energy and Water team within the Shire as the Integrated Water Management Officer. In addition to this I have a strong background in developing and delivering programs with a range of different business types and sizes to identify opportunities to improve their impact on the environment in ways that make good business sense, and save them money.

What do you think are the important factors needed for fulfilment of this criteria?

Awareness that reducing your impact on the environment can be done without costing you lots of money and should save a business money or increase profits by reducing their waste, improving energy efficiencies and introducing water savings initiatives.

What do you see as the benefits for businesses that get involved in the Best Bites program?

·        Reputation and promotion of the business

·        Improved standards across the region for business excellence

·        Networking with alike businesses, produce providers and suppliers

·        Collective advocacy opportunity for information, business support and introducing /trialling change with reduced business risk

·        Shared learnings among the industry network

What do you see as the benefits of the Best Bites program for the community?

 

·        Food Business excellence

·        Easy reference guide for quality experiences

·        Clean and sustainable peninsula

·        Cost efficient businesses that maximise your experience

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nick Bailey – Sustainability Victoria

Why did you get involved in judging for the Best Bites program?

 

Sustainability Victoria has provided the judge for the Best Bites for a number of years. Having been born and raised on the Peninsula I was happy to take on the role.

Which Best Bites category do you judge for?

 

Supermarkets

Tell us about your background and how it relates to the criteria you judge for

I have been with Sustainability Victoria for 9 years working with organisations to improve their environmental sustainability.  This has included energy efficiency, materials efficiency and waste management.

What do you think are the important factors needed for fulfilment of this criteria?

Supermarkets use significant amounts of energy to refrigerate their products and light their stores. Improved energy efficiency can reduce these costs.  Efficiently managing their waste can also lead to reductions in the amount of waste that goes to landfill and an increase in resource recovery.

What do you see as the benefits for businesses that get involved in the Best Bites program?

Businesses can receive recognition for the work they have undertaken to improve the sustainability of their operation.  It also gives them an idea of potential new improvements they could undertake.

What do you see as the benefits of the Best Bites program for the community?

 

Improved sustainability of supermarkets benefits the whole community.  Not only in the reduction of energy use but also in the improved management of waste.  Efficiencies might also lead to lower prices.

Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?

 

Supermarkets in the Best Bites Awards have demonstrated some outstanding sustainability actions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2017 Best Bites Food Awards Winners Announced

The winners of this year’s Best Bites Food Awards were presented with their awards by Mornington Peninsula Shire Mayor, Cr Bev Colomb on 1st May 2017. These awards are presented to the most outstanding local food businesses in the areas of healthy eating, tobacco control, sustainability and access for all.

Woodman Estate Moorooduc and RACV Resort Cape Schanck were joint winners of the Restaurant of the Year for their excellence in nutrition and healthy eating, tobacco control, waste and recycling, energy and water efficiency and access for all.

Merchant and Maker McCrae won the Café of the Year, with other category award winners being:

Primary Producers:
Peninsula Fresh Organics in Baxter and Hillock Downs in Rye

Aged Care:
Winner - Andrew Kerr Aged Care in Mornington
Highly Commended – Opal By The Bay Mt Martha

Bed and Breakfast:
Winner - Sunnyside Up Bed and Breakfast in Rye
Highly Commended – Harmony Bed and Breakfast in Fingal

School Canteen/Child Care:
Balnarring Early Learning Centre and Hastings Child Care and Kindergarten

Supermarket:
Winner - Ritchies IGA in Mt Eliza
Highly Commended – Aldi Mornington Homemaker Centre

Takeaway:
Winner - La Casa Nostra Deli in Rosebud
Highly Commended – Mt Eliza Deli
Highly Commended – Be Fit Foods Somerville

Innovation:
Somers School Camp

Hillock Downs in Rye and Peninsula Fresh Organics in Baxter were joint winners in the new Primary Producer category which is open to Mornington Peninsula Produce members

Laneway Espresso in Dromana was awarded the People’s Choice Award for food businesses that were nominated by local food consumers.

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