Two young butchers and former workmates both came away with silverware after representing Wales in a major UK competition in Birmingham today (Tuesday).

Mathew Edwards, 21, who works for S. A. Vaughan Family Butchers, Penyfford, near Chester, was overall runner up after achieving a category win and three runners up places at The National Federation of Meat and Food Traders’ Premier Young Butcher competition at the NEC.

His former employer, Tomi Jones, 22, who runs Jones’ Butchers, Llangollen, won the kitchen ready category. Overall winner of the contest, held on the first day of MEATUP 2013 show, was English butcher Ryan Healey.

The result was a reversal of the Welsh Young Butcher Competition 2012 last December, when Tomi, who recently won the VQ Learner of the Year award for Wales, edged out Matthew to become champion.

Both butchers are working towards an apprenticeship, delivered by award-winning training provider, Cambrian Training Company, based in Welshpool. The company’s head of curriculum for food manufacture, Chris Jones, praised them for their work in the gruelling competition, which ran from 10am to 2.45pm.

“I was really pleased with the way they handled the pressure and the standard of work that they produced,” he said. “To both come away with silverware from of a competition of this calibre is a brilliant result and I think they have come on leaps and bounds since the Welsh Young Butcher Competition.”

The butchers were tasked with seaming and fine trimming beef primals and producing a ready to eat product, a stuffed roast, BBQ and kitchen ready selections.

There were strict time constraints in each category and industry experts judged the products and the butchers for innovation, skill and working technique.

For more information please contact Katy Godsell, Cambrian Training Company’s Marketing Manager, on Tel: 01938 555893 or Duncan Foulkes, public relations consultant, on 01686 650818.