Awards celebrate the best in Bramleys

An awards event acclaiming businesses that have supported the Bramley apple market took place last week against a backdrop of tough sales and dismal weather.

Bramley apples - image: Brammy Awards
Bramley apples - image: Brammy Awards

The Brammy Awards follow a challenging year for growers who, with few exceptions, struggled with production and sales, said Bramley Apple Campaign chairman Adrian Barlow.

"As far as sales and production are concerned the last year has been difficult," he said at the London event.

"The crop was down due to weather conditions and lack of producer profitability in the previous three years. Crops of apples and pears across Europe are down 30 per cent, and some people have stopped growing Bramley, reducing production further and causing shortages in recent months."

However Sainsbury’s ability to cope with these factors was acknowledged by its receiving the chairman’s award.

"Their fresh sales of Bramley exceeded 4,000 tonnes during the year, with a share of Bramley sales of almost 27 per cent, approaching double their share of grocery sales overall," said Barlow.

Multiple-retailer award went to Waitrose for bullish sales of fresh Bramley throughout the year and a wide range of products in stores. With a market share of 8.4 per cent, Waitrose also significantly over-trades on Bramleys.

Best Bramley sweet product award went to Mr Kipling for its Bramley Apple Pies, described by Barlow as an "iconic product" with high sales and good distribution through a vast number of retail outlets.

Best foodservice product gong went to JD Wetherspoon for its Bramley apple, pear and raspberry crumble, which won over judges with its strong taste and texture.

Sodexo scooped the best foodservice company award thanks to its promotion of Bramley products and its work with schools to increase children’s knowledge and awareness of the cooking apples.

Other winners included Cottage Delight, which won awards for best savoury product and best apple sauce. Meanwhile the best media foodwriter award went to Diana Henry for "extolling the qualities" of Bramley in several articles throughout the year.

"The competition in all categories has been very high this year," said Barlow. "The winners have shown outstanding support for Bramley apples in the last 12 months."

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