Washington, D.C.—Providing the big picture and some compelling statistics for the specialty food space is a new report published by the Specialty Food Association. Sales are up and growing almost across the board, and specialty foods are grabbing market share from conventional foods, according to the report.

All signs point to a continued rise in interest in alternative diets. A 2012 study from the Vegetarian Resource Group found that 2.5% of U.S. consumers self-identified as “vegan,” up from 1% since as recently as 2009 (1). Couple this with the documented decline in meat consumption, and it is clear that widespread dietary changes are afoot. Raw food-centered lifestyles also continue to garner interest. In each of these areas, food companies are stepping up to the plate to turn curious shoppers into loyal customers through marketing and innovation.

The ballots are in. The votes are tallied. And now without further ado, we are thrilled to share with you the winners of the 2014 WholeFoods Natural Choice Awards.

Ice cream sales generate big dollars in the United States. $10 billion, to be exact, in 2011 (1). Manufacturers in the competitive ice cream space are pulling out all the stops to grab their piece of the pie (à la mode, of course). The results are some pretty unique high-end gourmet products that are far from vanilla. We’re seeing outside-the-carton ingredients and flavor combinations like herbs and salty-sweet varieties that have piqued the interest of shoppers. And the cherry on top are premium ingredients that bring products to new levels in terms of flavor and social responsibility.

Late July Organic Snacks has launched Restaurant Style Organic Tortilla Chips, available in Sea Salt and Chia & Quinoa. The chips are certified USDA organic and Non-GMO Project Verified.

New Sprout Rise Morning Multigrain Crunch Bites are part of Sprout Foods’ new Sprout Rise collection of healthy breakfast foods for the family. The bite-sized, organic cereal is made with whole grains, is high in protein and fiber and is filled with real fruit and vegetables. Flavors include Red Berry & Beet, Orange Fruit & Carrot and Purple Berry & Carrot.

The Veri Soda Company has a new line of USDA organic, non-GMO sodas. Sweetened with organic cane sugar and stevia, Veri soft drinks are made with fruit juices and sparkling water, and contain 60 calories per can. Veri sodas come in Cola, Orange, Lemon Lime and Ginger Ale. SRP for a four-pack: $4.99.

Made from organic bananas, Barnana Original Chewy Banana Bites are a raw vegan snack. Banana Bites are certified organic and contain high amounts of fiber and potassium, as well as over 20 vitamins and minerals. Barnana also makes Chewy Chocolate Banana Bites, covered in organic dark chocolate. Barnana snacks are non-GMO and Kosher.

Blue Monkey Coconut Collection has introduced 100% natural coconut chips. These fiber-rich baked chips come in three flavors: original, wasabi and ginger. They contain no sugar and are lightly sweetened with coconut nectar. Other Blue Monkey products include coconut water, coconut + guava juice and instant coconut water mix.