Innovation that Counts

Delaware North delivers fan engagement with 'Ultimate Football Food' competition

Derby County supporters seized the chance to have their say in 2015 on club catering at the final of the Delaware North "Ultimate Football Food" competition.

The Ultimate Football Food final saw Derby County fans submit their ideas for alternative football fayre that could feature at iPro Stadium. Three dishes were shortlisted and then created and offered to the public to taste and judge before the biggest home game of the season against Nottingham Forest.

The final three dishes had been selected by a Delaware North executive panel, including the head chef at iPro Stadium, Neil Hardy, after being assessed on creativity and suitability for sale at the stadium.

With 41 percent of the public vote, Derby resident James Hodgkinson was crowned as champion, thanks to his "All-in-One Pie," which combined minted lamb with the obligatory mushy peas and gravy all within a pastry.

“The Ultimate Football Food was a fantastic campaign, which allowed us to engage with fans in a real and authentic manner," Simon Harrington, business development and marketing director for Delaware North in the UK, said.

“The final event was a major success with thousands of fans queuing up to sample the three dishes," Harrington added. "The ‘All-in-One Pie’ was a worthy winner, cleverly combining the classic lamb and peas combo inside a delicious pastry crust. We are now looking forward to seeing the dish on the menu at iPro Stadium.”

The other two shortlisted dishes were Stuffee Pie (a chicken, sausage meat and stuffing pie), created by Alvaston resident Heather Gomez, and the Ramburger (a minted lamb and pea burger), which was the brainchild of Swadlincote resident Kevin Savage.

John Vicars, chief operating officer of Derby County, added: “We were delighted with the response to the Ultimate Football Food campaign. It was brilliant to see the top three creations brought to life, and we had a great turnout with fans queuing up to try the dishes on offer.

“Many congratulations to James for the winning All-in-One Pie, which will be coming to the iPro in the near future!”

The All-in-One Pie will appear on sale at the iPro Stadium before the end of the season. Hodgkinson will be rewarded with a VIP experience at the Capital One Cup Final at Wembley Stadium on Sunday 1 March.

“I’m thrilled to have won the Ultimate Football Food title and to have taken part in the competition," Hodgkinson said. "The All-in-One Pie is a modern twist on a classic and it’s great that it’s been recognised by the public as a good fit for the iPro Stadium.”