Hannan Meats lands UK 'supreme champion' accolade in Great Taste Awards
MOIRA-based The Meat Merchant, owned by Peter Hannan, has been named as the Supreme Champion in the final of the UK Great Taste Awards - the second time he has collected the top prize.
More than 10,000 different products were entered into the 2016 Great Taste Awards and judged by more than 500 palates.
This was whittled down to 2,520 products being awarded one-star, 878 awarded a two-star and 141 claiming a three-star award before the Top 50 Foods were announced last month ahead of the declaration of the Great Taste Supreme Champion 2016, sponsored by Harrods, at The Royal Garden Hotel in London.
In all, Hannan Meats achieved 36 product awards in the 2016 Great Taste Awards, a record number for a single food manufacturer in the UK or Ireland.
Food NI chief executive Michele Shirlow praised the Moira meat processor’s commitment to quality, outstanding taste and innovation, and the support from its chief executive Peter Hannan for the local food and drink industry.
"This was an outstanding achievement by Hannan Meats against fierce competition from companies from across the UK, Ireland and other parts of Europe," she said.
“Hannan Meats is a remarkably successful company which has now become the first ever in the history of this prestigious and influential competition to win the Supreme Award twice.
"It is an outstanding role model for other smaller food and drink companies of just what can be achieved from a commitment to excellence across a business. In addition to two Supreme Champion awards, Hannan Meats has now won more gold stars for its products than any other company in the UK and Ireland.
“The latest achievement follows its success in 2012 and is particularly timely coming as it does during our first ever Year of Food and Drink, an initiative supported enthusiastically by Peter Hannan."
She added: “The award will help to raise awareness of the quality of our food and drink to another level especially in Great Britain, our most important external market.”
Economy Minister Simon Hamilton joined in the congratulations for the Meat Merchant and its owner Peter Hannan.
He said: “Hannan Meats is our most successful company in the history of the Great Taste Awards and typifies the world-class food and drink produced in Northern Ireland.
“This accolade tops a remarkable year for Peter Hannan and is recognition of the company’s outstanding commitment to innovation.
“It’s a unique year for Northern Ireland food and drink. The 212 local products rewarded with the UK Guild of Fine Food’s valuable independent validation of taste and quality present an important and fitting showcase of the pure, natural quality of our produce.”
In July, 13 local products from eight companies were awarded the highest accolade of three gold stars in the prestigious annual event organised by the influential UK Guild of Fine Food. Eighty four local companies also secured almost 303 gold stars."