Seafood Smokery Bundaberg has been named a Sydney Royal Fine Food Champion after taking out a swag of awards at the Royal Agricultural Society of New South Wales competition yesterday.
Co-directors Luke Truant and Lincoln Kirchner travelled to Sydney for the awards after being told by organisers that they “should probably come down” as “you’ve done exceptionally well”.
So the Burnett Heads-based entrepreneurs made the journey to Sydney only to discover they had won six medals for six products at the prestigious awards event.
Despite having an inkling that they might have done well Luke said he was blown away with the results.
“We’re excited – ecstatic would probably be the term, and overwhelmed,” Luke said.
“It’s really nice to know that our ridiculous amount of hard work is starting to be recognised.
“All the time we spent developing a product and starting from scratch and doing things totally different to the norm is paying off.
“They got industry experts from all over Australia to come together to do the tasting.
“[It’s incredible to have] industry panels that are the best in the country and they see your product and they’re blown away by something so different.”
Seafood Smokery Fine Food Champions
The highlight of the awards for the duo was having their Macadamia-Smoked Blue Salmon named a champion specialty product.
Their near perfect score took out a highly coveted gold medal.
“Each product is actually judged on its own merit.
“They’re rated in a point system. Our blue salmon rated 95 out of 100 points.
“It was the highest product … besides boxed chocolate in a different category.
“We got the highest points rating out of any fish product.”
Luke said he considered these awards to be one of the most prestigious food awards on offer in all of Australia.
“It’s really quite hard to win a gold medal.
“For us to score 95 points and be a leader in a fish product and score that high is pretty amazing.”
And the Sydney Royal Fine Food accolades continued coming in for the Seafood Smokery.
‘The next highest point scorer was our macadamia-smoked sea mullet, right behind it was the sea mullet roe.
“They were both silver medal winners.
“The bronze medal winners were all macadamia smoked, Spanish mackerel, blue mackerel and our macadamia smoked fish pate.”
The six products are now approved to use the Sydney Royal Fine Food artwork.
Luke said it was wonderful to have that validation for their products as they had always held the awards in high regard.
“We used some of their gold medal winning products as benchmark products to develop our own.
“We wanted that sort of validation with our products and obviously the recognition that comes with winning these awards.”
The pair also snapped a photo with Better Homes and Gardens presenter and chef Ed Halmagyi, better known as Fast Ed.
“He’s a pretty funny guy.
“Really nice, genuine guy.
“Obviously everyone loves the story and the fact were using undervalued fish and adding value to it.”
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