Great Taste Awards: entry level up by 20% in 2011

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Food and drink producers the length and breadth of the UK are celebrating winning coveted one-, two- or three-star gold awards in the 2011 Great Taste Awards.

According to organisers, entries were up by 20% this year, proving despite tough trading conditions, British speciality food and drink remains in great shape.  

A total of 1,686 entries were awarded a one-star gold award for products ranging from Hannan Meats Organic Lamb Rump and English Provender Company’s Caramelised Red Onion Relish to Bramley Lodge’s Bakewell Tart. Over 600 (608) entries were awarded two-stars, including Okemoor Quality Foods Homemade Chicken and Leek Pie, Salcombe Dairy’s Seville Orange Sorbet. Over 100 (114) entries achieved three-star status. These included, C Lidgate’s Beef Bourguignon Pie and Terre et Terre’s Sussex Crab Apple and Calvados Jelly.

The three-star gold award-winning foods, nominated for the coveted Great Taste Golden Forks, have now been announced by organiser, the Guild of Fine Food. The identities of the regional and national winners and the 2011 Supreme Champion will remain under wraps until the awards presentation at London’s Royal Garden Hotel on 5 September 2011.

Over 400 producers, buyers, retailers, chefs and food writers will enjoy a range of three-star award-winning food and drink as BBC Radio 2’s Nigel Barden announces the winners of the coveted Golden Forks.  

The Great Taste Awards, organised by the Guild of Fine Food, are now in their 18th year. Almost 7,500 products were entered by 1,600 companies to the 2011 Great Taste Awards, an increase of 20% on 2010. It took 350 experts 34 days to blind taste all the entries and decide which were worthy of gold star awards.

Bob Farrand, chairman for The Great Taste Awards, said: “Winning gold in the country’s largest and most respected independent food accreditation scheme is a massive pat on the back for any producer – independent proof their products are of the highest quality. We provide constructive feedback from our expert judging teams and for many, winning one, two or three-star gold is exactly what’s needed to help grow their businesses, even during a recession. Every winner should feel very proud their hard work has been rewarded. Historically winning gold has the ability to transform the fortunes of small food and drink businesses.”

A full list of award-winning products is available at www.greattasteawards.co.uk , and can be searched by region, award or product category.