NELSON COMPANY WINS INTERNATIONAL FOOD INDUSTRY AWARD
Results of the 2006 Scovie Awards, the food industry’s top award recognizing hot and spicy foods, have just been announced and NELSON- based AWASSI Maker’s of EBESSE ZOZO HOT SAUCE is among the winners. AWASSI Maker’s of EBESSE ZOZO HOT SAUCE, which manufactures EBESSE ZOZO HOT SAUCE , has received one Scovie Award(s). A panel of the country’s top culinary experts sampled some of the most noted names in gourmet food, and the top scoring products each won a coveted Scovie banner.
Hot EBESSE ZOZO Hot Sauce which took 2nd place in the categories HOT SAUCE HABANERO base, Over 600 products from around the world competed for top honors. The Scovie Awards were created by Dave DeWitt, publisher of Fiery-Foods & BBQ Magazine and founder of the National Fiery Foods & Barbecue Show. The awards are named for Wilbur Scoville, who pioneered a rating scale for spicy foods, and have become the industry standard for excellence in over 60 categories of fiery foods.
Nelson, B.C. hot sauce maker Edmond Segbeaya has torched the competition for the first time at the 2006 Scovie Awards (presented by Fiery-Foods and Barbecue Magazine) -a prestigious international contest for blistering condiments held October 10, 2005 in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
The Habanero-crammed West African-style condiment Segbeaya calls Ebesse Zozo means "hot pepper" in his native Togolese and is five times hotter than Tabasco. Originally only available in the Nelson area, Ebesse Zozo made its debut in the Lower Mainland earlier this year and is available at Caper's Community Markets in Vancouver.
Segbeaya's company, Awassi, is a one-man show that Segbeaya founded in 2002 shortly after he and his family arrived in Nelson after living for 10 years as refugees in Germany.
Now widely known in the Nelson area as "the hot sauce guy," Segbeaya didn't start out as a cook. In 1991, he was a politically active student in Togo when he and his wife fled from a dictatorship government leaving their young twin daughters behind. It wasn't until 10 years later that the Segbeayas were reunited in Nelson after being sponsored by several local churches. He began making West African-style hot sauce to suit his family's tastes, but after giving a few others in town a taste, he was encouraged to produce it for sale.
Dave DeWitt, long considered the father of the fiery foods industry and the author of over 30 books on fiery cuisine, noted, “I am proud to see how the Scovie Awards have become the preeminent award for flavorful foods. Our entries come from every corner of the globe, and our winners hail from 33 states and four continents This year’s Scovie winners really exemplify the diversity and quality of this industry. It is not so much about heat as about the wonderful flavors of fiery foods.”