The best and most committed food producers, restaurateurs, retailers and suppliers were recognised at the 2017 Aylsham Show when a range of awards were announced during the Bank Holiday Monday event.
Four Norfolk Hero Food & Drink Category Awards were handed out at the Blickling Park Show as follows:
Best Specialist Food or Drink Producer: Yare Valley Oils, Surlingham (Sponsored by Barclays)
Best Use of Norfolk Produce on a Menu: The Duck Inn, Stanhoe (Sponsored by Gressingham Foods)
Best Food or Drink Supplier/Retailer: Nortons’ Dairy, Frettenham (Sponsored by Dewing Grain)
Best New Food or Drink Venture, started in 2015/2016: Vanvino, Wymondham (Sponsored by For Farmers)
From these four, a Championship Winner was chosen, which was The Duck Inn, Stanhoe (Sponsored by Lovewell Blake).
The Championship Winner was presented with the Ken Dye Memorial Salver by the Show President, John Wootten and Chris Solt from Lovewell Blake.
The Individual Food or Drink Hero was Michael Baker, M/D of the C T Baker Group, presented with the Aylsham Show President’s Tankard by John Wootten.
Chair of the Competition, Jacinth Rogers, said: “Again we have seen the impressive quality of Norfolk food and drink businesses and the range of produce they offer.
“It is heartening to see the effort and commitment shown by these businesses alongside their superb products and excellent service to the customer and the wider industry.”
Mr Wootten added: “It was a pleasure to present the Individual Food or Drink Hero Award to Mike, who is such a long standing supporter of Norfolk food producers.”
Receiving his award, Mr Baker said: “It is important for jobs and the local economy to support our local growers and producers.
“Of course, local food will be fresher and associated with fewer food miles.”
C T Baker Group’s championing of local producers dates back to 1982 when the Bakers and Larners Food Hall introduced a range of products from Pointen’s Dairy, who were the first Championship Winner eleven years ago.
The ever popular range of cheeses from Mrs Temple, also a previous Championship Winner, found its first commercial partnership at the Bakers and Larners delicatessen where around 17 local cheeses can be found today.
A host of other local producers in-store includes the multiple Great Taste Award winning Candi’s Chutney, Winbirri Wines and popular local spirits including Norfolk Gin and Norwich Gin.