Roadshows come to a close

Butchers from across the South East flocked to the latest Regional Roadshow and Product Evaluation Event. Organised by BPEX, the event took place at the South of England Showground, Ardingly and drew 289 product entries from 43 butchers.

The top award from the event went to Terry Gaterell, owner of Gaterells of Felpham, for his ‘Pork Fillet with Apricot Stuffing’ ready meal. As Overall Champion, Terry now goes forward to the national roadshow final in June along with the regional champions from each of the six previous events this season.

Terry said: “I’m delighted! We first entered the event two years ago and were regional champions then, so to get the title once again is fantastic. We always try to enter different products, ones that differ from the norm, and I think this makes us stand out. But what makes these results even more pleasing is that it is the first time we’ve cooked the dish away from home!

“The idea for the pork fillet came out of a recipe book and was developed just weeks ago with the help of our chef Jonathan Kent. The fillet is well trimmed and it is this, along with the quality of the ingredients, which makes a real difference to the end result. Presentation is important too and the dish looks good, tastes great, re-heats quickly and offers superb value for money.

“We have seen increased demand for ready meals and pies, but while customers want quality they also want value; this dish meets all of their requirements and more. We’ve spent the day making up quantities of the dish as once we announce the awards success it will fly off the shelves!”

BPEX butchery and product development manager, Keith Fisher, said: “It was great to see so many butchers and a fantastic range of quality products at our last roadshow of the 2008-2009 season. Of the 289 products entered for evaluation, 282 achieved an award; and half of these were gold.

“This just goes to show the outstanding skill of butchers across the south and clearly demonstrates why consumers are returning to their local butcher shops for quality meats and produce. We applaud the category champions on their success and congratulate all of the award winners.”