04NOV2019 — TORONTO, ON – Happy Pops all-natural frozen treats proved that it has the right ingredients to become one of the Top Ten Innovative Products at the 2019 Grocery Innovations Canada (GIC) trade show.
Happy Pops was among the 10 winners that walked away with the title “Winner of the 2019 Grocery Innovations Top Ten in Grocery” Award. GIC is Canada’s premiere grocery trade show, featuring over 320 food and retail exhibitors from around the globe. Happy Pops Founder and CEO, Leila Keshavjee was on site to accept the award during the annual trade-only show, which took place over two days — October 22-23, 2019 at the Toronto Congress Center in Etobicoke, Ontario.
After graduating with a degree in kinesiology from the University of Toronto, Leila began noticing that food products often spelled out the ingredients in a convoluted and misleading way. What alarmed her most was that the call-outs on packaging bringing attention to the various health benefits of the product, were far outweighed by harmful artificial flavours and additives in the ingredient list. Some products clearly had no nutritional value, yet the packaging would tell a different story. She chose to put her dreams of becoming a physician on hold, and to start a company that uses clean, natural ingredients, with packaging that clearly indicates every ingredient. With that mission at its core, Happy Pops was born in 2016 and the company has been on the rise ever since. Happy Pops is about being a clean-ingredient snack that tastes delicious and that’s what is satisfying. It’s 1/2 a serving of fruit per bar and an average of 50-70 calories.
In 2018, Leila successfully applied to be a candidate on the hit CBC Television show Dragon’s Den, in which she received four separate offers from the judges. She appeared in the season premiere of Season 13 and launched retail packaging earlier this year.
“Winning this award proved to me that all the late nights and personal sacrifice has been worth it. I want to thank my team and my family for their support and commitment. My goal is to make Happy Pops available in every province across Canada in the next few months. Knowing that our customers enjoy and benefit from the all-natural products we produce is so incredibly rewarding,” remarked Leila following her win.
The distinctive achievement of being selected among the Top Ten at GIC is undertaken by veteran industry adjudicators that assess the products found in the 2019 GIC “New Product Showcase”, featuring over 700 new products. Many retail outlets and grocery stores rely on this showcase to determine the types of products that will stock their own shelves in the coming year. Naturally, the Top Ten winners go straight to the top of that list.