Family butcher D H Robertson has been crowned the nation's Beef Link Sausage Champion in the Scottish Craft Butchers Awards 2022.
As delighted staff at the Fisheracre shop celebrated their win, owner Steven Bennett revealed that the Scottish Championship-winning sausage that had lifted top honours was a recipe never entered for competition before, which has been tweaked and perfected over time.
He said: "We've been working on an old recipe that I was given when I was an apprentice.
"We entered it for the championship in hope rather than expectation and we're absolutely overwhelmed to emerge as champions - it's just fantastic.
"To know we make the best beef link sausages in Scotland takes a little bit of getting used to but we're thrilled to bits."
Steven praised his young apprentices who have been in charge of the sausage development and production.
He continued: "The pressure is now on to make sure we produce plenty beef links to let everyone taste the best in Scotland.
"We will be ensuring we don't let the quality slip."
Pork and beef links account for a large part of D H Robertson's business, using locally sourced top quality meat and hand made at the shop.
Steven added: "Our customers will be thrilled at our success. They're very loyal and supportive and the touching feedback we receive when we do well is just amazing.
"A Scottish Championship for a core product is hard to beat so we'll be dining out on this for a long time to come."
The competition attracted entries from all across Scotland and Julian Warner of sponsors Lucas Ingredients said it was a tremendous event to be involved with, recognising and rewarding the very best in the industry.
He said: “Lucas Ingredients is delighted to sponsor this award category.
"The skill and creativity needed to create a delicious Beef Sausage reflects our brand’s core values. We congratulate Steven and his team on becoming national champions.”
Scottish Craft Butchers President Tom Courts said the standard displayed in the competition typified the quality produced by craft butchers in every part of the country.
"It's great to see butchers vying for the accolades again after Covid," said Tom, "and we're seeing the very best of the best take this year's championships.
"It gives a butcher a great lift to know his products are judged to be the best in Scotland and customers can be assured that the championship-winning product they buy across the counter at D H Robertson is exactly the same as those that secured the judges' vote in the competition."
NFU Scotland President Martin Kennedy and Chief Executive Scott Walker had the privilege of judging the championship final.
Speaking afterwards, Mr Kennedy said: “Scotland’s craft butchers have an incredible reputation for producing high quality, innovative products and getting to taste the very best beef sausages the nation has to offer was an honour for us both.
“The nation’s butchers remain huge and loyal supporters of our red meat sector and their role in relaying to the public our fantastic story on local, sustainable, welfare and environment-friendly beef, lamb, pork and chicken is pivotal.
"It is no surprise that consumers have increasingly turned to butchers throughout the pandemic for reassurances on where their meat comes from and how it has been reared.
“And with such high-quality products, like those that made it to the final, the future for Scottish Craft Butchers is assured.”