Young New Zealand butcher champion learns from Britain’s finest

New Zealand’s Young Butcher of the Year has been learning from the best of British as part of a study tour.  

Timmy Watson, was crowned New Zealand’s 2014 Alto Young Butcher of the Year.

As part of his prize, he was provided with a study tour to the UK, where he was able to work alongside prestigious butchers from the country. Watson was welcomed by the national Butchers Q Guild, who facilitated his stay.

“We were delighted to facilitate Timmy’s learning experience in his short stay with our members,” said Q Guild manager Gordon Newlands. “This will enhance and foster the links that already exist between New Zealand and Q Guild Butchers.”

Watson, who has been a qualified butcher for the past eight years, received an array of experience from some of the country’s leading butchers. His visit began at Chadwick’s Butchers in Balham, London, where, as well as getting the opportunity to hone his own sausage-making and lamb cutting skills, he showed off his own abilities to the locals.

Gary Chadwick, the shop’s co-founder, said: “Timmy also showed us a thing or two, including how to clean a lamb rack bone with a piece of string! He demonstrated a top-drawer attitude and we were very impressed with his talent. We could clearly see why he won the New Zealand Young Butcher title.”

Watson also spent time at Lidgate’s Butchers in Holland Park and HG Walter’s Butchers in Barons Court, both in London.

The young butcher was able to experience all angles of the British butchery industry; he even woke at 12.30am one morning to assist D Andrade and Son at London’s famed Smithfield, the country’s largest wholesale meat market.

The company’s managing director Paul Andrade was excited to work with the up-and-coming butcher. “We had him doing a bit of everything, from unloading lorries to butchery tasks, such as boning out mutton legs. He was very confident and certainly knew what he was doing. He would be an asset to anyone and I am sure he will go from strength to strength.”

Watson has taken part in the Alto Young Butcher of the Year competition, run by Retail Meat New Zealand, several times. After placing first equal in his regional heat in 2014, he went on to win the grand final in Auckland.

Furthermore, he has also represented the South Island of New Zealand in the North v South Butchery Challenge. He has his sights set on one day opening his own store.

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