Butcher roadshows end on high

Meat bosses were celebrating after the final leg of the BPEX Regional Roadshow and Product Evaluation Events ended on a notable high.

The seventh stop on the tour, at the Reebok Stadium in Bolton saw 44 butchers enter more than 260 products, 79 of which achieved a gold award and over a third silver.

Mark Brookes from Staffordshire based Boxley Meats was crowned Overall Champion for the North West for his Pork and Chicken Pie, in addition to his superb achievement of three category titles and a 100% gold award success for all six products entered.

His Steak and Ale Pie wowed the judges of the Speciality Hot Eating Pie category, as did his Pork Pie' to take the category of the same name.

Mark who recently purchased Boxley Meats with Adrian Jackson said: "We're absolutely delighted, particularly as this is our first big competition since taking over the business. The Chicken and Pork Pie has actually been in existence for many years - we actually came up with it to help raise funds for our local church. The Steak and Ale Pie is a more recent addition, yet since its creation some nine months ago it has become one of our most popular sellers.

"All of our products use the best quality ingredients and the method remains the same, be it for counter or competition, meaning we deliver a consistently good product. I must thank Keith Boxley, who I've worked with for twenty years, to allow us the opportunity to take the business forward and I'm sure these accolades will help."

Other winners included 22-year-old Chris Topham, from H Clewlow Butchers in Cheshire, with his Pork with Apple and Cider Sausage to take the final Young Sausage Maker title of the season.

Chris, a butcher for five years, said: "We're really pleased, although we knew we had a great sausage we didn't expect to do quite so well. The recipe was developed last year but we only actually made the sausage for the first time for the event. It is based on our existing pork and apple sausage, which uses quality pork reared at a local agricultural college. The added ingredient of cider makes this a perfect summer sausage, which we hope to start selling in the shop."

BPEX butchery and product development manager, Keith Fisher, said: "It was a great end to a very successful round of roadshows. We were delighted to see so many butchers and the standard of product entry was phenomenal."

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