East Dean butchers win Italian Job sausage contest

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Downland Butchers of East Dean is celebrating a haul of awards, including a prestigious champion title for their ‘Italian Job Sausage’.

The family run shop, which has been supplying quality meat to locals for 22 years, entered the South of England Butcher Roadshow and Pork Product Excellence Awards, organised by BPEX.

Taking place at the Ardingly Showground last week, 206 pork products were scrutinised by leading industry experts in ten categories.

Father and son team Graham Croucher and Sam Connor received a total of seven awards for products entered – six gold and one silver – as well as two of the ten category champion titles.

Their ‘Italian Job Sausage’ topped the Speciality Pork Sausage category and a ‘Pork and Apple Burger’ was the standout product in the Pork Burger category.

It was a significant result for Sam, who is preparing to take over the reins of the family business when his father retires next year.

Graham said, “We decided that Sam should go along for the first time this year as he will be the one to take the business forward. And what a great result he had. The ‘Italian Job Sausage’ is one of our most popular and successful sausages. It is my own recipe, which has now been passed to Sam, created after a family holiday to Italy. It is the blend of herbs, tomato and soft and succulent pork shoulder that work so well.

“We have a range of 25 sausage varieties on sale, all made using quality Sussex pork to our own recipes. I know the shop will be in safe hands with Sam.”