asda-awardsAsda has been named Retailer of the Year at the 2010 British Turkey awards. The supermarket chain was declared winner for its wide and varied product range, which judges said would satisfy demands from the store’s family orientated target market.

The panel of independent judges applauded Asda for their “excellent variety”. As well as family sized cuts such as diced thigh, mince and breast steaks, and economical Smartprice steaks and drumsticks, there were also some innovative products within the range which impressed, such as turkey sausages. Judges agreed that there was a product for the consumer suitable for all meal occasions.

The labelling on packaging also scored highly with judges, who felt the chefs’ tips, health messages and clear British credentials were appealing to consumers, as well as show support for the British turkey industry.

Morrisons was praised for a “huge range and faultless enthusiasm” and Sainsbury’s for its “simple selection with good packaging”. But Asda was the best all-rounder, said the judges.

Asda was handed the Retailer of the Year trophy by sports personality Sir Geoff Hurst, MBE and Matthew Pullen, chairman of British Turkey Federation’s Marketing Committee, in front of 200 guests and VIPs at Claridge’s, London. Supporter of the ‘I love British Turkey’ campaign, Olympic medallist Gail Emms, co-hosted the awards with tv presenter Chris Hollins.

Winners of the 10 categories were announced from 86 entries, ranging from slow cooked turkey shanks, potato-coated bakes, and turkey bacon to eleven different whole roasted turkeys.

The judging panel, made up of trade and consumer journalists, included a consumer, mother-of-three Pauline Gibson, who won her place through a competition on the British Turkey website. She said: “My family love eating turkey – it should definitely be cooked all year round. There are so many options when buying turkey, it comes in all shapes and sizes.”

The hotly contested Christmas category was split into two sections – Traditional and Convenience. KellyBronze, the free-range brand farmed by Kelly Turkeys won the Best Traditional category, which judges deemed to be “a magnificent looking bird with a slightly gamey flavour”. The award for the Best Convenience category was scooped by Tesco Finest for the Bronze Turkey Breast with Pork, Chestnut and Apple Stuffing, which comes in its own foil oven tray. Judges said it would make a “great option for Christmas Day”.

Matthew Pullen, Chairman of the British Turkey Publicity and Marketing Committee, said: “We must congratulate the retailers and producers for the continual excellence achieved in the British turkey industry. The quality and sheer range of products available all year round on the supermarket shelves is encouraging and should be recognised.”

The evening also raised more than £5,000 for the children’s medical charity Sparks.

The winners in full:

Best Meal Solution (Sponsored by DS Smith Packaging) Tesco Boneless Turkey Thigh Joint with Sea Salt and Black Pepper

Best Innovative Product (Sponsored by Kilco) Asda Sweet Chilli Turkey Sausages

Best Branded Product (Sponsored by T Clarke and Sons Poultry) Lincs Turkeys Fresh Lincolnshire Turkey

Best Catering Product (Sponsored by ABN) The UK Foodhall Ltd Ready to Roast British Turkey 2×1.5kg

Best Ready-to-Eat Product (Sponsored by Sierra Space Heating) Tesco Finest Hand Carved Butter Basted Turkey

Best Christmas Convenience Product (Sponsored by Hybrid Turkeys) Tesco Finest Bronze Turkey Breast with Pork, Chestnut and Apple Stuffing Wrapped in Dry Cure Bacon

Best Christmas Traditional Product (Sponsored by Noble Foods) Kelly Turkeys KellyBronze Turkey

British Turkey Recipe of the Year (Sponsored by Springetts) Gerardine Sykes – Turkey in Spicy Yoghurt Bake

Best School Meal (sponsored by Aviagen Turkeys) Anna Spooner, Lethbridge Primary School – Christmas Pie

Retailer of the Year (sponsored by Elanco) Asda

British Turkey

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