"Cock up" nets Butcher top foodservice award

A "cock-up" which left a butcher with a surplus of cheese eventually led to the creation of an award-winning product.

Grimsby-based John Pettit & Sons took the title of Foodservice Pork Product of the Year for the second consecutive year with its Lincolnshire Yellow Belly Pie.

But the product was only created after an over-order of Lincolnshire Smoked Poacher cheese, John Pettit revealed.

The pie, which is a twist on one of the business' old favourites, was developed by John's son-in-law Andy Johnson.

"It was his cock-up ordering all this cheese in the first place!" said John.

However, Andy certainly turned it to the business' advantage and created a product which impressed the judges, taking a traditional pork pie and replacing the pastry top with a cheese lid.

"The recipe for our pork pie is based on one that my grandfather was using when he opened the business back in 1892 and the yellow belly pie has essentially evolved from that," said John. "For the competition we swapped the plain pastry lid for a cheese one."

The business also took a further two titles, winning the best cold eating product category with a Beaujolais Terrine, and taking second place with a 'Bloody Mary Parcel' in the best innovative pork product category in the competition, organised by BPEX.

John added: "To be crowned overall champion for the second year running is just wonderful. We strive to make the best quality products and getting these awards just proves to ourselves and our customers that we are doing just that."

The competition generated 91 entries from butchers and caterers nationwide that supply the foodservice industry. Following an initial judging round, products from three finalists in each of the six categories of entry were put forward to the grand final held at Butchers' Hall in London yesterday.

BPEX foodservice trade manager, Tony Goodger, said: "Our congratulations go to all at John Pettit & Sons; they've done extremely well in what was a very tough competition. The company has demonstrated for the second year running that its pork products are top quality and hard to beat!

"Now in its third year, the quality of products submitted into the BPEX Foodservice Pork Product of the Year competition continues to impress, and all of the finalists must be congratulated for their efforts.

"Pork is such a versatile, tasty and cost-effective ingredient and customers love it! In fact, we know that many would order more pork dishes if they were more widely available on pub and restaurant menus. That is why it is important to acknowledge those producers that supply such wonderful, delicious quality pork dishes."

The Foodservice Pork Product of the Year competition recognises and rewards product excellence and innovation in six separate categories: Fresh Pork Cut, Pork Ready Meal, Best Cold Eating Product, Pork and Pastry, Best Cured Product and Best Innovative Pork Product.

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