For Immediate Release: Ontario Students Win $2,000 Bursaries for New Food and Beverage Ideas

Ontario Students Win $2,000 Bursaries for New Food and Beverage Ideas


TORONTO, ON – July 13, 2017 – Food and Beverage Ontario (FBO)’s Taste Your Future program has announced the winners of its inaugural “Stir Up a Career” bursary contest which was created as part of FBO’s campaign to encourage young people to consider careers in food and beverage processing.


The winners are:


  • Danielle Laforest of Welland, Ontario, a student at the University of Guelph, for her product idea, “Pure Herb.” Danielle’s idea for frozen herbs packaged into meal- and cocktail-themed kits will help reduce food waste and inspire home cooks and cocktail-makers.
  • Angie Ibrahim of Toronto, Ontario, a student at McMaster University, for her product idea, “ICI Water.” Angie’s idea makes room temperature beverages feel cold by infusing them with a flavourless compound that stimulates the mouth’s coldness receptors.


Each winner receives a $2,000 bursary, mentorship from an Ontario processor, resume-building support from FoodGrads and business resources from Food Starter to help them pursue their interests in food and beverage processing.


“This bursary contest celebrates the innovative and creative ideas that young people bring to the food and beverage sector. We are thrilled with the quality of the winning entries, and hope one day we will see them come to fruition,” said Michael Burrows, Chair of the FBO Board, CEO of Maple Lodge Farms, and contest judge. “The food and beverage sector is growing in Ontario and that means new opportunities across the sector for young people looking for a career or a first job.”


“There are so many opportunities for young people in the food and beverage industry,” said Nicole Gallace, Founder of FoodGrads and contest judge. “There are more than 170 programs at 29 universities and colleges that will help lead to careers processing, from engineering to marketing, along with specialty positions from food scientist to brew master. It’s an exciting time to choose a career in food and beverage processing.”


The contest was open to students across Ontario. Students submitted their ideas via video in one of two categories, “Maker & Designer” which focused on new products or the “Scientist, Programmer, or Engineer” category which focused on category process to improve food and beverage manufacturing. Winners were selected by a panel of judges working in the sector and received extra points for how well they promoted their ideas online.


FBO would like to thank the judges: Michael Burrows, Chair of the FBO Board and CEO of Maple Lodge Farms; Nicole Gallace, Founder of FoodGrads; Dana McCauley, Executive Director of Food Starter; and Carson Walsh, Process Engineer at Mondelez Canada.


Taste Your Future’s bursary contest is grateful for the support of its partners: Food and Beverage Ontario, the Golden Horseshoe Food and Farming Alliance, FoodGrads, and Food Starter.


Check out the winning entries at and join the conversation on social with #TasteYourFuture.



Twitter: @TasteYourFuture


About Food and Beverage Ontario

Food and Beverage Ontario (FBO) is a not-for-profit, leadership organization advancing the interests of Ontario's food and beverage processors. FBO's focus is on the success, prosperity and growth of the food and beverage processing industry. For more information go to


About Taste Your Future

Taste Your Future is a career awareness program focused on encouraging young people and new Canadians to pursue careers and jobs in Ontario’s food and beverage processing sector. Through Taste Your Future, FBO aims to help meet the Ontario government’s challenge to create 60,000 new jobs in the sector by the year 2020. Taste Your Future is supported by Growing Forward 2, a federal-provincial-territorial initiative.


Learn more about careers in the food and beverage industry at



Media Contact:

Isabel Dopta, Director of Communications

Food and Beverage Ontario


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