Alnwick apprentice butcher proves himself a cut above the competition

Turnbull's butcher Rob Darling.Turnbull's butcher Rob Darling.
Turnbull's butcher Rob Darling.
An apprentice butcher has been nominated for an award after impressing during his training period.

Rob Darling, 19, has now become a fully qualified butcher after completing two years industry training under the watchful eye of Turnbull’s master butcher, Peter McEwan.

Industry training provider, Meat Ipswich, were also so impressed with Robert during his 75-minute skills test, his assessor has nominated him for ‘best meat processing apprentice’ within The Institute of Meat and the Worshipful Company of Butchers.

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Rob joined Turnbull’s of Alnwick as an apprentice butcher at the age of 17 at a time of expansion for the business, with the existing town centre shop bolstered by the new Northumbrian Foodhall in Willowburn Retail Park.

Rob Darling from Turnbull's of Alnwick.Rob Darling from Turnbull's of Alnwick.
Rob Darling from Turnbull's of Alnwick.

He went on to win Q Guild Young Butcher of the Year in 2020 when he put his own spin on a traditional Wellington, using pork fillet, butterflied open and stuffed with chorizo and morcilla, encased in puff pastry and brushed with a seasoned oil.

Daniel Turnbull, owner said: “Rob is a dependable, resourceful, and personable member of the Turnbull’s team. He is also an exceptional young butcher and unsurprisingly has recently achieved a pass with excellence upon completion of his butchery apprenticeship.”

Now a fully certified butcher, Turnbull’s are excited to help Rob continue his progression and look forward to celebrating his future achievements.

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Turnbull’s are also now looking to recruit another apprentice to follow in Rob’s footsteps.

The successful candidate, working alongside its experienced team of master butchers both in the shop and cutting and processing unit, will be given the opportunity to learn the necessary skills to become a fully qualified butcher and to develop skill sets that will allow them to become one of the country’s best young apprentice butchers, competing in national competitions.

The apprenticeships are overseen by Meat Ipswich.

A representative from MEAT Ipswich said: “Butchery apprenticeships have transformed in recent years, with the introduction of new apprenticeship based on ‘standards’ raising the bar on training in the meat industry. MEAT offers Certificates, Awards and a full range of apprenticeships to butchers across the UK.”

Expressions of interest may be made to [email protected]

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Turnbull's of Alnwick teenager wins Young Butcher of the Year accolade

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