Dear Journalists in SA,

The SAAFoST Meritorious Awards for Food Journalism (2016/2017)

It's that time of the year again to have some fun and explore four ways of earning welcome prize money!

If you wrote or published an article or broadcast a radio or TV programme in 2016 relating to food safety, food additives or food processing which, you feel, has contributed towards improving the consumer's knowledge or understanding of these issues, please participate in this annual SAAFoST Meritorious Award for Journalism competition.

If you did both, you have two chances of winning a first prize. If you did neither but can track down and nominate those stunning articles and programmes, possibly done by colleagues, that you so enjoyed during the course of 2016, and that win prizes for the authors, you stand to win a Finder's Fee - or possibly two!

This is how it works - a prize of R6,000-00 in each of two categories is up for grabs - one for the author of an article that has appeared in the Printed Media and one for a programme broadcast on radio or TV (Electronic Media).
There's also a finder's fee of R1,000-00 in each category for the talented media scrutineer who is first to nominate one or both Meritorious Award winners!

It was another busy year for crises and controversies and much was written about legislation, labelling, best before and expiry dates, chicken brining, the Noakes diet, the gluten-free fad, food security, GMO's, sugar/tax, salt, the obesity and related issues pandemic, advertising to children and the appointment of inspection, "assignees"' by the Dept of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.

Should you not be sure of an article or programme's relevance, submit it anyway and let the adjudication panel decide for you.
If you'd rather not complete an application/nomination form at this stage, simply submit the item for screening and you will be requested to fill it in afterwards if the adjudication panel finds the work appropriate. Submit several articles or programmes if you like.
The closing date for nominations is Friday 28 April 2017.

Should food safety, additives, processing and related topics not be your field of interest or expertise, please feel free to forward this invitation to any and all relevant colleagues and associates. Consider nominating someone whose work has improved your own understanding of a controversial complicated or perplexing food issue.

Last year's winners (2015/2016):
The winner of the printed-media award, for his two-part article titled Fashionable Food Fears and published in the Daily Maverick on 20 and 26 October 2015 was Ivo Vegter. Several of his articles were submitted, one by a member of this Association living in Australia. Ivo is well known for the huge amount of credible research that goes into his topical, hard hitting and educational articles. He is the first author since the start of this competition in 1990, to win this Award three times - he is truly an asset to the journalistic profession and to consumers in SA.

Food Preservatives and Food Labelling in SA is the title of the winning audio clip of an interview conducted by Tamara Le-Pine Williams on Classic FM in February 2015. Anyone interested in this subject is advised to listen to this interview with Janusz Luterek and Nigel Sunley, two of the top experts in their respective fields of food law and food science.

These and previous winning items can be viewed on the SAAFoST website:

Detail & nomination form
For full particulars on the Awards plus a nomination form, refer to the SAAFoST website, here:
Some of the website info is pasted below for easy access.
Please contact me should you have and queries or comments - I'm looking forward to a flood of fine, engrossing submissions.
With thanks & best wishes,

Owen Frisby
Tel/fax: (012) 346 2091
Executive Director:

Member Website:
Consumer Website:
Congress 2017 Website:
NPO 013-075



For work published or broadcast in 2016

In the interests of promoting public education on food issues, particularly with respect to Food Safety, Food Additives and Food Processing, SAAFoST has established Meritorious Awards for Food Science Journalism to recognise those local journalists whose reports are objective and scientifically correct and consequently whose work contributes to sound consumer knowledge and understanding of controversial or complex food issues.
Nominations for the following two categories are invited:

Printed Media
Electronic Media
Details of the awards follow. Nomination forms together with a copy/recording of the article/programme should be sent to:
The SAAFoST National Secretariat (Attn: Virosha Basdeo)
c/o Turners Conferences
PO Box 4507, Durban 4000
Tel: (031) 368 8000
Fax: (031) 368 5100

Closing date for nominations: Friday 28 April 2017

This award is open to articles or programmes originating in South Africa and covering any issue related to Food Science and Technology (with the exception of purely nutritional issues) which are: i) Published in South African newspapers, magazines, periodicals or websites, ii) Broadcast on South African radio or television, iii) Directed at the general public or a section of the public (Trade and House Magazines are excluded), iv) Published or broadcast during the calendar year 2016 and v) Which have not received any other awards.

Entries may be submitted by any journalist, author, publishing house or media department. Nominations for the award may be made by any journalist or member of SAAFoST. Nominees must accept nomination by signing the nomination form.

Entries and nominations will be adjudicated by a panel consisting of the Association's President, the Vice-President, the President Elect and three other members appointed by the Executive Committee of the SAAFoST Council. The panel may refer the entry to an expert in the field for evaluation but such expert will not form part of the adjudication panel.

Nature of the award
Two Meritorious Awards are offered, one for the printed, the other for the electronic media. They will take the form of a certificate and a cash prize of R 6,000 each. A "Finders" fee of R1,000 will be awarded to each of the finders in the "published" and the "broadcast" categories. If the winning item is submitted by more than one "finder", the fee will go to the first submission received by the National Secretary. The presentation of the awards will be made annually by the President or a Council member at a SAAFoST function if possible. The travelling and accommodation expenses of recipients will be met by SAAFoST where necessary. The panel may also decide to award Certificates of Merit to other deserving entrants. No cash prizes apply to the latter.

Nomination form available here:


Meritorious Award for Journalism - winners to date:
i) Ivo Vegter (Daily Maverick) Printed Media
ii) Tamara le Pine-Williams (Classic FM) Electronic Media
2013/14 Robyn Maclarty (Fair Lady)
2012/13 Ivo Vegter (The Daily Maverick)
i) Catherine Boome (Business Day) Printed media
ii) Karen Key (SAfm) Electronic media
2010/11 Ivo Vegter (Daily Maverick)
2009/10 Lydia van der Merwe (Sarie Magazine)
2008/09 Dr Ingrid van Heerden (DietDoc)
2007/08 Jane Badham (Shape Magazine)
i) Carol Browne (Weighless Magazine)
ii) Hantie Schrader (SABC 2, Focus) Electronic media
2005/06 Dr Carl Albrecht (Die Burger)
2004/05 Dr Penny Love (Weighless Magazine)
2003/04 Taryn Lamberti (Femina)
1999/00 Freek Robinson (SABC 2, Focus) Electronic media
1990/00 Prof Jennifer Thomson (Sunday Times)
1994/95 Gudrun Kaiser (Fair Lady)
1990/91 Debbie Collings (Fair Lady)

Merit Certificates

2007/08 Lyse Comins: (The Mercury)
2002/03 Karin D'Orville: (SABC 2, Focus) Electronic
1999/00 June Bearzi: (The Star)
1994/95 Madeleine de Villiers (SA Food & Home)
i) Debbie Collings (Fair Lady)
ii) Madeleine de Villiers: (SA Food & Home)
iii) Jill Dunstone (Health Talk)