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Ready, steady, go!

The National Fish & Chip Awards 2020 are open for entry and Kelly Barnes of Krispies says go for it!

The 1st May saw the National Fish & Chip Awards 2020 launch, giving shops the opportunity to once again put themselves forward.

Just to give you some idea of what it took, it was 20 years of building the business and 10 years of entering for us to get to the level we were at to be worthy of the title we were bestowed with in January this year. The prep doesn’t start on day one of applying, it starts months, maybe years, before. Then there’s the feedback to contend with if you’ve entered before, which for us was always an interesting day. Thoughts of ‘I’m never entering again’, to ‘this year we are going at it hard’ were often verbalised!

It’s stressful and rewarding but I can honestly say I’d do it all again.

Trade immediately after winning went crazy but now, with four months under our belt, I would say it’s continued to see a steady increase of 35%-40%.

We haven’t seen a huge amount of opportunities to get out there and push fish and chips since winning, but the increase in trade has been great for promoting the industry as a whole. And it’s meant we’ve been lucky enough to be able to offer more jobs to the local community on the back of winning. We have increased our staff from 25 to 34, which is great for a takeaway.

The award has also provided our manager and assistant manager with the opportunity to go to Japan and cook at Hankyu Department Store’s British Fair in October, following in the footsteps of predecessors such as Millers, Kingfisher and The Bay. This is a huge boost for them in their career and they are very much looking forward to the challenge.

"The prep doesn’t start on day one of applying, it starts months, maybe years, before."

It could be very easy to sit on our laurels now that we have won, but we always saw winning as a starting block for bigger things. So we have a strategy day once a year to determine the goals we want to achieve and timescales of when we’d like to achieve them by. It’s one of the reasons that the business has grown for the last 15 years and it’s important that we carry on this trend by reinvesting in training and in the business as a whole.

So, while we take a year off from entering the awards, I would encourage you to put yourselves forward. You don’t have to go for the flagship Takeaway Award, there are 14 other categories to enter. Good luck!

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