Young butchers celebrate international success

UK young butchers were celebrating after a strong showing in this year’s International Young Butcher Competition.

The event, held in Utrecht, the Netherlands, last week, saw Luke Haigh, of Bolster Moor Farm Shop, take third place in the Regional Speciality category with his “London 2012 Olympic Pie”. Luke was beaten by Mathius Mache from Austria in second place and category winner, Switzerland’s Marco Muller, who also became International Young Butcher 2012 runner-up.

Held over two days, butchers from Austria, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Switzerland and England, competed in six disciplines, including breaking down and trimming a hip of beef, presentation of regional and speciality dishes and the preparation and display of barbecue products.

Competing with fellow young butcher Mathew Gothard, the pair managed to ensure the English team finished in an impressive fifth place, ahead of Austria, Luxembourg and Greece. In the individual rankings, Luke finished eighth, and Mathew 12 out of 14 entrants.

Roger Kelsey, chief executive of the National Federation of Meat and Food Traders, which organised the English entry, said: “We knew the lads were better placed this year than in the UK’s two previous appearances – but to get a result like this shows great improvement and goes to prove that we have the talent in our country to compete alongside the very best in Europe.
“Without the support of our sponsors and help from people like team coach Viv Harvey we could never have made such progress or achieved so much in so short a time, which shows great promise for the future.”
The overall title went to Dutchman Marco van der Haut. The competition is organised annually by the International Butchers’ Confederation (IBC) and the NFMFT has been supported with sponsorship from Eblex, Bpex, the Meat Training Council, the Worshipful Company of Butchers, RAPS, Gesame, Weddel Swift and Leeds City College.

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