The Official Great Aussie Meat Pie Competition will celebrate its 22nd anniversary at Fine Foods Australia, to be held 5 – 8 September at the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre.
According to event organiser, John Ross, the competition was established to help raise the public profile of the ‘Aussie icon’ as it struggled against the launch of a number of US-based fast food franchises at that time. The event also helps Australian pie makers to improve the standard of their pie production.
Mr Ross said there wasn’t a standard for meat pies when the competition was first introduced and with the help of a number of experienced pastry chefs, the competition was able to establish an accepted industry standard.
“The competition also encouraged the development of the gourmet pie and allowed pie makers to experiment with new recipes so that today, gourmet pies make up a significant proportion of pie makers’ total sales,” Mr Ross said.
Goldstein Bakery and Pie Shop production manager, Joshua Goldstein said he was looking forward to defending Goldstein’s 2010 vegetarian pie win and will try to come up with something new for the competition.
“We stick to our classics but always try and put at least one new one in that we do and we’ll add that to our menu,” Mr Goldstein said. “(I’m thinking of) incorporating some colourful vegetables into it,” he hinted.
Rolling Pin Pies and Cakes owner, Nathan Williams said his pie sales have been going well since winning last year’s red meat pie category.
“Awards such as these definitely create a lot of interest,” Mr Williams said.
“Just as important, I believe, is its effect on staff morale, particularly in the bakehouse. We have a very young team including four apprentices and awards like these undoubtedly provide a sense of achievement and increased motivation,” he said.
“Our team is already looking forward to this year’s competition.”
An important feature of the competition is the judges’ feedback, which entrants will have access to after the competition.
All past entrants will receive a mailed entry form during July, while anyone else interested in entering the competition can download one from the Official Great Aussie Meat Pie Competition website.