Scottish butchery talent celebrated at national awards

Six butchers from across Scotland have been recognised for their skills and progression in the Scottish Craft Butcher Training Awards.

The awards, sponsored by Quality Meat Scotland’s Scotch Butchers Club and the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA), are in their fourth year. They play a valuable role in recognising the efforts of young people to develop their butchery skills throughout their careers, as well as those who offer support along the way.

Ian Hume, a butcher at David Bennett & Son in Dunblane, won Training Mentor of the Year, an award for the individual who has encouraged a trainee in their development within their workplace.

Hugh Black & Sons, which operates 12 butcher shops across Scotland and is one of the biggest independent butchers in the country, took home Training Partner of the Year, an award for the employer or business which has successfully engaged with Scottish Meat Training and the assessors, to maximize the potential of their trainees.

Sam Fachie from Aberdeen was the recipient of Level 3 Modern Apprentice of the Year an award for those excelling in their training. Sam has seen the Modern Apprenticeship programme further his career, recently becoming Manager of Davidsons Specialist Butchers in Dobbies, Aberdeen after reaching Level 3 of his Modern Apprenticeship.

Sarah Swanson who works at A. Donald Butchers in Uddingston won Level 2 Modern Apprentice of the Year. Sarah made the move into butchery after studying for a BA in Events Management. The career change has been hugely successful for Sarah who is already on Level 2 of her Modern Apprenticeship.

Matthew Newlands and Alan Jamieson of AJ Jamieson Butchers in Fochabers scooped the Extra Mile Award which recognises those who have gone the extra mile in their own progression, new product development, customer service or in any way that has had a positive effect on the business they work in.

Alan Clarke, chief executive of Quality Meat Scotland, said: ‘We were delighted to be supporting the Scottish Craft Butchers Training Awards this year and our congratulations go to all the winners and finalists.

‘It’s vitally important that the skills, dedication and talent of our Scottish craft butchers is celebrated. Every entry received reflects the passion and commitment in the industry, and we’re thrilled that some of the country’s best butchers are receiving national recognition for the important work they do.’

Gordon King, executive manager of the Scottish Craft Butchers, said: ‘These awards are a vital part of our industry as they reward and recognise the accomplished craft butchers, at all stages of their career, who play a vital role in preserving and promoting butchery skills across Scotland. All of the winners and finalists are leaders in their field and deserve huge congratulations.’

Training Award Winners:

Modern Apprentice of the Year level 2: Winner, Sarah Swanson from A Donald Ltd in Uddingston. Finalists: Dominic Ellis from A J Learmonth in Jedburgh; Robert Macleod from D Campbell & Son in Callander.

Modern Apprentice of the Year level 3: Winner, Sam Fachie from Davidsons Specialist Butchers in Aberdeen. Finalists: Daniel Bryant from Blair Drummond Smiddy in Blair Drummond; William Muir from John Saunderson Ltd in Edinburgh.

Training partner of the year: Winner, Hugh Black and Sons from Bathgate. Finalist, Bryan Beveridge Quality Butchers in Dunfermline.

Mentor of the Year: Winner, John Hume from D Bennett and Son in Dunblane. Finalist, Kenny Milne from H & S Milne & Sons in Aberdeen.

Extra Mile Award: Joint winners, Alan Jamieson from A J Jamieson in Fochabers, Mathew Newlands from A J Jamieson in Fochabers. Finalists, Spencer Hughes from A D Paton in Largs, Gwen Miller from Strachan Craft Butchers in Blantyre.