Hunt on for best pork product

The annual competition to find the best pork products in the catering industry is now under way. The Bpex ‘Foodservice Pork Product of the Year Awards’ recognise and reward quality and innovation.

From pâtés and pies to bacon and burgers, Bpex said pork was one of the most versatile ingredients in the foodservice sector, and is popular with diners of all ages.

Catering butchers, manufacturers and chefs are all eligible to enter the prestigious competition for 2011, which is now celebrating its fifth year. MTJ has teamed up with Bpex to support the Best Innovative Pork Product award, but there are six categories in total to enter, including:

•    Fresh Pork Cut, in association with the NACB
•    Pork Ready Meal (Fresh or Frozen), in association with Pub Chef
•    Best Cold Eating Product (Cooked, Chilled or Frozen)
•    Pork and Pastry, in association with British Baker 
•    Best Cured Product
•    Best Innovative Pork Product (Fresh or Frozen), in association with Meat Trades Journal

Bpex foodservice trade manager Tony Goodger said: “Quality pork dishes deserve their highly valued place on the menu. They have universal appeal, satisfying customers across the entire range of eating establishments – from fine dining to food on-the-go – and, more importantly, deliver exceptional opportunities for profit.

“The Pork Product of the Year competition has grown steadily over the last five years, demonstrating the popularity of pork and how it can be adapted to all types of cuisines and be used in new and novel ways. It is well regarded and used as an effective tool by companies looking to perfect and promote their ‘award-winning’, quality pork products.”

The 2010 winner, Holmersterne Foods, which won the Overall Champion title for its innovative Khmer Pork Curry, agrees. Kevin Hacking said: “The competition is a great way to get valuable, independent feedback on products specifically created for the catering sector. The comments from the respected judges help us make sure we’ve got our products just right – and, of course, the subsequent awards are a great endorsement too.”

The competition is open to all butchers and manufacturers of pork products supplying the catering sector, as well as chefs. The closing date for paper entries is Wednesday 26 January 2011, after which samples will be required for formal judging. All products are judged to strict guidelines and can potentially receive a gold, silver or bronze award according to their final score.

First, second and third place in each of the six categories will be showcased at a special awards lunch at Butchers’ Hall, London, on Thursday 24 March, where the 2011 champion will also be announced.

Entry forms and full terms and conditions are available to download from www.porkforcaterers.com. For any other information please call the competition hotline on 07503 871179 or email info@bpexfoodservice.com.

>>Ultimate foodservice sausage revealed

>>Holmesterne Foods wins top pork foodservice award