2017 delicious. Produce Awards: Highly Commended

2017 delicious. Produce Awards: Highly Commended

Standards at the final of the 2017 delicious. Produce Awards, in association with Fisher & Paykel, were extremely high. The judges faced a very difficult task when it came to selecting the winners. All the producers had put hard work, passion and love into their products and entries, and it showed. Although the judges were only able to choose one winner out of each of the seven categories, they have given the accolade of ‘Highly Commended’ to a further eight products. These are:

Isle of Skye Sea Salt Company’s Pure Sea Salt Crystals
When four friend set out in 2011 to produce salt on the Isle of Skye, there was no grid connection to their loch-shore site where they planned on collecting the salt. So, they had to rely upon the sun and the wind to dry and evaporate the crystals. For this, they had to design and refine their production methods from scratch, creating bespoke tunnels from recycled or recyclable materials and fine-tuning the process as they learned. The result is unrefined salt crystals with a distinctive texture and unique flavour.

Sole of Discretion’s Pollock
An antidote to the mainstream fishing industry, Sole of Discretion supports small-scale fishers who care about the quality of their catch and use ethical fishing methods, and who would otherwise suffer financially because of their small scale.

The company is made up of fishers who only use static nets and hand lines from small boats, methods that have much less impact on the sea bed. The initiative was set up by Caroline Bennett, and run from a unit on the quay at Plymouth.

Orange Elephant Ice Cream’s Elderflower and Lime Yoghurt Ice Cream
Rob and Helen Taverner use milk from a heritage breed called the Devonshire milking cow (nicknamed ‘orange elephant’ because of its size, large ears and long face) to make their beautifully creamy ice cream.  From calf to cone, every stage of the process is handled on their farm, and Helen makes the ice cream in small batches.

Borough Broth Company’s Free-range Organic Chicken Bone Broth
Ros Heathcote was amazed by how difficult it was to find a UK distributor of quality slow-cooked stock that had no added sugar, preservatives or MSG, so in 2015 took on the challenge and set-up Borough Broth Co.

All the bones used to make their stock are sourced from high-welfare, 100 per cent grass-fed beef reared on local, organic, Soil Association-certified farms. Their packaging is made from sustainable, 100 per cent recyclable materials and, to save energy, they transport their chilled broth from their Broth Kitchen in the West Country using Woolcool – a sustainable, recyclable, food-friendly insulation made from natural lambswool.

Haughton Honey’s Pure English Honey
Crispin Reeves began his honey-making enterprise in 2005 with just a single hive. Twelve years on the number of hives has since grown to 300 and Haughton Honey is now part of a regional honey bee farmers’ cooperative – honey from 2,000 other hives across several English counties supplements Haughton Honey’s own batches of the sweet nectar.

Haughton Honey is cold-harvested the traditional way and left un-pasteurised to help retain the natural nutrients and enzymes that would be lost in the pasteurisation process.

GrowUp Urban Farms’ Sunflower Shoots
GrowUp Farms is the UK’s first commercial aquaponic vertical farm. It was established in 2013 by Kate Hofman and Tom Webster, who were spurred on by the idea of making sustainable, urban farming a mainstream concept in Britain. 
By making use of unused urban space and aquaponic technology (a no-waste, closed-loop system), they hope to reduce the impact agriculture has on the environment.

Out of their warehouse in East London, GrowUp supplies fresh, salads, micro-greens and herbs on sustainable, small-scale for local restaurants and online groceries.

Moorland Spirit Company’s Hepple Gin
It takes up to seven times longer to produce a batch of Hepple gin than it does an average gin, and three different extraction processes to do so. Nevertheless, the team at Moorland Spirit Company are adamant this is the only way to capture the essence of the Hepple juniper tree, whose green, sharp berries are the bedrock of their uniquely Northumbrian gin.

Cusgarne Organic Farm’s Grass-fed beef
Sisters Zennor, Lamorna and Veryan Pascoe are the seventh generation to run Cusgarne Organic Farm near Truro. After becoming disillusioned with the use of chemicals on the farm, their parents moved it into organic production in 1988, and the girls have continued with that approach.

One of Cusgarne’s star products is their organic beef. The mild Cornish climate allows their small herds of cows to spend summers grazing on lush pasture. During winters they eat hay and silage cut and baled from the farm’s own fields. 
An abattoir three miles away finishes the beef, which is hung for three weeks.

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