The country’s butchers went to war at the weekend in one of the industry’s most fiercely contested competitions.
And doing battle in the spectacular showcase finals of the UK’s first ever Butcher Wars were Lanarkshire butchers Sean Kokot and Alan Neill of Ramsay of Carluke.
Run by Scottish Craft Butchers as part of their biennial Trade Fair in Perth, the Scotch Lamb PGI sponsored event attracted top talent from all over Scotland and south of the Border.
The duo was one of 12 teams taking part in the Pairs competition where they was up against the clock and some of the country’s most experienced butchers in a 45-minute challenge.
The Wars challenged butchers to break down a half saddle of Speciallty Selected Pork and a half Scotch Lamb to create a show-stopping display.
Each was judged on a raft of criteria including their personal appearance, butchery skills, food safety, wastage, creativity and health and safety.
Although they didn’t win, time-served butchers Sean (21) and Alan (25) said it was “tremendous” to be part of the first ever Butcher Wars in Scotland.
“This is the first time we have taken part in anything like this,” said Alan, “and we were up against some of the finest butchers in the country.”
“It was great experience,” added Sean. “A chance to show off our skills and learn from others. It was a real thrill to be part of the whole event.”
Graeme Sharp, Quality Meat Scotland’s Scotch Butchers Club Manager, said:
“Scotland is home to a huge amount of talented, innovative and dedicated butchers, with the Scottish Butchers Wars highlighting all of these skills and more in what was an electric final.”
Douglas Scott, Chief Executive of Scottish Craft Butchers hailed the inaugural Butchers Wars a “huge success”.
“Butchers Wars are a feature in Australia and New Zealand but this is the first time they have been staged in any other country,” he said.