Kiwi butchers are fine-tuning their recipes for the annual Devro New Zealand Sausage Competition, which opened this week. This year, it take place in conjunction with New Zealand’s first National Sausage Day to be held in October.
The Devro New Zealand Sausage Competition gives New Zealanders access to more variety, better choice and greater quality sausages, just in time for National Sausage Day – the celebration of a kiwi summer icon.
Head judge Kerry Tyack says he is delighted to be returning to the role and relishes the opportunity to discover what new taste combinations are on offer in 2015.
“I never tire of this amazing competition. Every year there are improvements, changes and innovations. There can be no doubt, Kiwis have conquered the art of creating great sausages and I am excited to renew my acquaintance with people who are passionate and knowledgeable about food and their craft in particular.
“The timing of the event is perfect. It kick starts the summer season by celebrating a Kiwi barbecue icon.
“Our summers are all about eating great food, and sausages are a big part of that,” says Tyack.
In previous years, the competition has attracted more than 450 entries covering 11 categories. These include traditional beef, traditional pork, poultry, saveloys, cocktails, polonies, pre-cooked, flavoured, traditional flavoured, rounds, continental fresh, continental ready-to-eat and gourmet.
Sausages are assessed on visual appeal, aroma, flavour, texture, shrinkage and composition by a team of more than 30 judges all with either a butchery or culinary background.
Paddy Kennedy, from Allenton Meat Centre in Ashburton (pictured left picking up his award last year), was the 2014 Supreme Award winner with a beef and blue cheese sausage and explains how winning the competition has helped market their product to customers.
“Winning the Devro New Zealand Sausage Competition was the best form of advertising for our business which money just can’t buy,” said Paddy.
“Coming up 12 months after the win we are still making 10 times more sausages than we were prior to the competition,” he said.
The competition is supported by Devro, Kerry Ingredients and Alto Packaging.
Results will be announced on 21 October, the day before the inaugural National Sausage Day on 22 October.
Supplied by Retail Meat New Zealand.