Golden glory for Alnwick butcher

Q Guild national chairman and five-times gold award winner, Mark Turnbull, with Monica Galetti.
Q Guild national chairman and five-times gold award winner, Mark Turnbull, with Monica Galetti.

An Alnwick butcher scooped five golds at a national awards ceremony, earning praise for its bacon, sausages, burgers, ham and pork tenderloins.

Turnbull’s of Alnwick secured the five-strong haul in the 2015 Butchers Q Guild Smithfield Awards, the annual product evaluation event open to the Guild’s 110 members nationwide.

One of them – Winter-spiced bacon – achieved maximum marks, with other golds handed to the Market Street shop’s pork, leek and stilton sausage, beef steak burger, orange-glazed, home-cooked ham and Spanish-style pork tenderloins, a kitchen-ready product.

Turnbull’s is a former Smithfield Awards supreme champion – the highest accolade a Q Guild Butcher can achieve. “It was one of the proudest moments of my entire career,” said Mark Turnbull, who is currently national chairman of the Q Guild.

The 29th Smithfield Awards were open to all Q Guild members UK-wide and this year attracted a record entry of 472 individual products across nine categories from 56 Q butchers – more than half the national membership.

The awards were presented by Monica Galetti, a well-known chef and presenter and judge on BBC2’s MasterChef: The Professionals, at a ceremony at Ironmongers Hall, London, last Thursday.

Mark said: “The Smithfield Awards remain one of the most demanding and stringent product evaluation tests in the land and the esteem in which they are held is clearly demonstrated by the fact that this year has seen record entries from a record number of businesses.

“All products need to be at the very top of their game to stand a chance of success and nothing says ‘we’re the best’ like winning a Smithfield Award.

“They remain among the meat industry’s most esteemed accolades, not only motivating recipients to introduce even more successful products, but also providing ideas and inspiration to fellow Q Guild members across the nation.”