Hampshire butcher Owtons, has won 12 awards at the 2012 Smithfield Awards, a national product evaluation which is among the most coveted in the meat industry.
Owtons have farm shops in Kimbridge, near Romsey and in West End, near Southampton, and work with 20 local farmers providing with pork, lamb and beef from around the area, including beef from their own farm in West End. They are members of Hampshire Fare, the county food group.
The prestigious Smithfields awards are organised by the Q Guild of Butchers, which is the UK's top independent butchers' organisation.
The evaluation consists of eight categories. Within each, products can win one of four awards - Diamond, Gold, Silver or Bronze. One of the Diamond award products is then selected as the overall winner of the evaluation. More than 400 products from Q Guild members across the UK were assessed in the product evaluation by an independent panel of judges, made up of both industry experts and lay judges.
Owtons won Gold Awards for its Pork & Leek Sausage, Oriental Duck Sausage, Lincolnshire Style Sausage, its Lamb Burgers and its Curried Lamb Sausages. The family firm also scooped another seven silver and bronze awards for other sausages and burgers, including a Corp' Jones wartime sausage winning a silver award. This sausage has also reached regional finalist in the 'iconic Sausage' category for the British Sausage Appreciation Society!
John Harding, Shop Manager at Owtons commented: 'We're thrilled that our products have been recognised in the Smithfield Awards, and we're especially proud to have received so many gold awards. As a Q Guild member, we regard ourselves as among Britain's best butchers, and these awards prove that we have the products to match. Winning a Smithfield Award definitely adds value and prestige to our business as a whole.'
The awards ceremony took place on 6th November 2012 at Butchers Hall in London. Broadcaster and food critic Jay Rayner attended and presented Owtons with its awards.
Not satisfied with the Smithfield Awards, Owtons are also celebrating success at the 2012 Great Taste Awards with prestigious gold awards for their traditional faggots and their oriental duck sausages.
For more information on Owtons, go to www.chalcroftfarmshop.co.uk or www.kimbridgeonthetest.com
Photo: Pictured at the Smithfields Awards, Left to right - John Harding, Jay Rayner, Gill Owton and Rob Owton.