Six WorldSkills finalists named

The six butchers that have made it to the final of the WorldSkills butchery competition 2017 have been announced.

The line-up is made up of three new competitors and three returning butchers. Making it to the final for the first time are: James Taylor, from Simpsons Butchers in the East Midlands; Lucy Webster of Taylors Farm Shop in the north west; and Joseph O’Gorman from Southern Regional College in Northern Ireland.

Returning for a another go at gold are last year’s runner-up, Dylan Gillespie from Clogher Valley Meats in Northern Ireland; James Gracey from Southern Regional College, last year’s highly recommended; and Martin Naan, also from Southern Regional College.

The final will take place over two days at the Skills Show, in Birmingham’s NEC from 16-18 November. The six butchers will be tasked with a series of challenges including producing ready-to-eat meals, a sausage-making and barbecue section, a kitchen-ready round, boning and seaming, and creating an aesthetically appealing display.

“Congratulations to all our butchery finalists for making it this far in the competition, as reaching the final in itself is a huge achievement and we are all excited to see how the competition unfolds at the Skills Show, and good luck to you all,” said Katy Godsell, marketing manager at the Cambrian Training Company, which organised the butchery competition.

Dr Neil Bentley, chief executive of the WorldSkills UK, added: “Congratulations to all of the finalists who will be competing at this year’s Skills Show.

“WorldSkills UK Competitions are proven to enhance a person’s apprenticeship or training programme by enabling them to develop key character and employability skills. By using knowledge gained from competing nationally and internationally, we know we are working to benchmarks that will equip more young people with the right skills to help UK businesses compete better globally.”

Meat Trades Journal is the exclusive media partner for the WorldSkills butchery competition, with independent meat consultant Viv Harvey, the National Federation of Meat and Food Traders, the Institute of Meat, the Food & Drink Training and Education Council and Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales sponsoring the competition.

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