Butchers battle it out for South West title

Fifteen young butchers will test their skills at the Hatherleigh Livestock Centre later this month as they compete for the title of South West Butcher of the Year.

The competition will take place at the Beef & Growing Cattle South West 2008, which will be held in Devon on 18 September. Organised by the National Beef Association South West, this one day event will showcase the very best of beef production in the region including craft butchery skills.

Thirteen young men and two women from as far afield as Penzance to Bridgewater will compete for the the champion title. They will be judged by master butcher Tony Reed of the National Federation of Meat & Food Traders on their ability to debone a set of four ribs and prepare beef burgers.

Helen Ashcroft of Meat South West and butcher competition coordinator said: "The NBA should be applauded for bringing the whole chain together at one event and showing the quality the South West has to offer from hoof to plate.

"It's great to see such an interest and high number of entries from young butchers in the region, giving them the opportunity to showcase their own butchery skills but also promote the skills of butchers in the South West."

Beef & Growing Cattle South West is sponsored by McDonalds, Mole Valley Farmers, Southern Counties Fresh Foods, Dectomax, Shearwell Data, CJ Saunders (Massey Ferguson) and South West Handling (Merlo).

The event is designed to provide everyone involved in the beef industry the chance to come and compare all the latest products, breeds, machinery and systems as well as take part in the debates in the Mole Valley Farmers Theatre.

For further information or to exhibit at the event, contact Rosemary Risdon, Event Co-ordinator, National Beef Association South West on 01409 271238 or email nbasw@tiscali.co.uk

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