Ham in the bag

The team at Perry’s Quality Meats, led by Josh Perry, adds another string to their ham claiming two state titles and making the top 10 of the national Australian PorkMark Ham Awards. Picture: Ashleigh Force. 

Award. For many the welcoming aroma of a warm leg of ham is the essence of a Christmas meal and  Perry’s Quality Meats knows just how to get the taste buds watering.

Following the Smithton butcher’s success at the Australian Meat Industry Council’s ‘Regional Sausage King Competition’, Perry’s Quality Meats has notched up two more accolades at the Australian PorkMark Ham Awards.

Claiming the state title of ‘Best Boneless Ham’ and runner-up ‘Best Bone in Ham’, the number one boneless product also earned a placing in the nation’s top 10 in sixth place.

The product was judged on taste, texture, colour, aroma, fat-to-meat content and moisture content.

Owners Josh and Jen Perry say they are thrilled to be leaving their mark on the industry.

“For people who have only been in the business for 18 months and to have the awards we have . . . it’s something to be proud of,” Jen says before her husband adds: “We’re stoked! The awards we have entered in competitions are not just little ones, so to be up in the top, we’re very impressed.”

Sourcing their ham from pig farmer Chris Farquhar in Bridgenorth, Tasmania, the product goes through a long process of scrutiny before it even hits the shelves, an operation which takes 10 days.

“There is an art to getting the perfect ham,” Josh says.

“There’s a lot of time and effort that goes in. That’s where you get the quality from – perfection – and from taking the time to keep the quality of our product at a high standard.”

He adds that it is hard to compete with supermarket franchises, who are able to produce larger quantities of ham at cheaper prices.

“This award stamps our authority in the market,” he says, with attention to detail what makes the product stand out.

“A lot of butchers now have machines [but] on a smaller scale we’re able to do it properly.”

Giving a special mention to employee Craig Tuxworth who pumps the ham with brine, Josh says manually tending to the product ensures a quality finish.

“Everyone has their own way of doing things, but the goodies that we put in – our secret recipe – that’s what makes it.”

Generally cooking 200 bone-in and 200 gourmet boneless hams throughout the year, for Perry’s Quality Meats the Christmas period is when it really ‘hams up’.

Preparations begin the first week of November and with orders coming from throughout the region and state, the team at Perry’s urge customers to get their orders in soon to avoid disappointment. The Smith Street shop will be open until Christmas Eve.

Josh and Jen wished to thank the dedication of their staff in producing quality products year-round.


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