The Australian Meat Industry Council (AMIC) hosted an exceptional weekend at the Twin Waters Novotel on the Sunshine Coast, marking the culmination of the National AMIC Apprentice of the Year and Sausage King competitions, showcasing the industry’s brightest talents and innovative spirit.

The weekend began with six of the finest apprentices embarking on a tour and dinner at Kilcoy Global Foods’ innovation hub, thanks to Kilcoy Global Foods. This provided an invaluable learning experience, highlighting the importance of understanding the supply chain through advanced virtual reality technology.

The competition’s intensity kicked off on Friday with a theory exam followed by practical tests involving lamb and pork preparation. The evening celebrated the apprentices’ hard work with a BBQ hosted by Cured Compliance and NBN Co, where the fruits of their labor were enjoyed by all.

Saturday introduced a unique challenge with the “Mystery Box” component, pushing apprentices to creatively incorporate leek into their dishes. This task not only tested their culinary skills but also their ability to innovate and balance flavors.

Esteemed judges Robert Constable, Dom Melrose, Trevor Hill, and Doug Piper, with over 85 years of combined industry experience, evaluated the apprentices.

“Each of the competitors should be immensely proud of their work and accomplishment. Their passion and willingness to learn and take on feedback is a credit to them and their employers.” said National Retail Council Chair Robert Constable.

The National final of the Sausage King and Best Butchers Burger competition also took place, with finalists from across Australia demonstrating their skill and creativity. Bob Retallick, head judge, expressed his pride in the competition.

“I am proud to help AMIC and the Independent Local Butcher prosper the trade. This competition showcases the butchers’ skill, craft, and unique flavour combinations.” said Mr Retallick.

The Ikon Pack Gala evening announced the winners, celebrating the prestige of being named Sausage King, Best Butchers Burger and Apprentice of the Year. Guests enjoyed a sumptuous three-course meal, highlighting the event’s significance and AMIC’s commitment to excellence.


AMIC Apprentice of the Year, proudly presented by Response Learning

Luke Thomas (QLD)

Runner Up         
Jordan Lowry (WA)

 Traditional Australian Beef Sausage, proudly presented by MLA

1st          Peter Augustus Craft Butcher (Gatton, QLD)
BBQ Beef

2nd          The Corner Butcher (WA)
Australian Beef Sausage

3rd          Mountain Side Meats (NSW)
Thin Aussie Sausage

Traditional Australian Pork Sausage, proudly presented by APL

1st         Swallow Drive Meats (Mount Gambier, SA)

Traditional Pork Sausage

2nd         Nigel’s Gourmet on Tamar (TAS)

Breakfast Pork Sausage

3rd          Marcos Fussy Meats (WA)
Classic Pork Sausage

 Poultry Sausage, proudly presented by Australian Food Super

1st          Borella Butchery (East Albury, NSW)
Free Range Chicken Parmy

2nd         Gympie Meathall (QLD)
Chicken Cheese Garlic Cracked Pepper

3rd         Meat Matters (VIC)

Chicken & Leek

Australian Lamb/Open Class Sausage, proudly presented by MLA

1st          Mark on Macquarie (South Hobart, TAS)
Spicy Lamb Merguez

2nd        Buckingham The Butchers (WA)

Lamb Feta Sun Dried Tomato & Spinach

3rd         Premier Meats (NSW)
Honey, Lamb and Mint

Continental Sausage, proudly presented by Cured Compliance

1st         Robert’s Meats (Singleton, NSW)            

German Bratwurst

2nd          The Corner Butcher (WA)
                German Bratwurst

3rd          Vermey’s Quality Meats (TAS)
Traditional Bratwurst

Gourmet/Open Class Sausage, proudly presented by iKON Pack

1st          Hunt & Co. Quality Meats (Bellbowrie, QLD)
Beef, Jalapeno, Maple & Vintage Cheddar Sausage

2nd        Pyrenees Premium Cuts (VIC)

Worcestershire & Cracked Pepper Sausage

3rd         The Corner Butcher (WA)

Beef Jalapeno & Cheese Sausage

Best Butchers Beef Burger, proudly presented by MLA

1st         Compass Meats (Mount Compass, SA)

Beef Cheese & Jalapeno Burger

2nd        Strath Hill Butcher (VIC)

Brisket Burger

3rd         Nigel’s Gourmet on Tamar (TAS)

Beef, Bourbon, BBQ, Brisket Burger

Best Butchers Gourmet/Open Class Burger, proudly presented by MLA
1st         Edge Hill Butchery (Edge Hill, QLD)

Lamb and Halloumi Burger

2nd        Meat Matters (VIC)

Brisket, Jalapeno & Cheese Burger

3rd           Rathmines Butchery (NSW)
                Gourmet Lamb Burger

Stuart Fuller, AMIC’s General Manager, Retail, extended his gratitude to all involved.

“I wish to thank the National Retail Council, AMIC staff, and our membership for making the weekend memorable. These competitions are a crucial part of AMIC’s offering, reflecting our commitment to innovation and excellence.” said Mr Fuller

AMIC also thanks event partners, including Meat and Livestock Australia, Australian Pork Limited, IKON Pack, Marsh Insurance, Australian Food Super, PBSAPOS, Cured Compliance, NBN Co, and Response Learning for their invaluable support.

“We look forward to announcing new changes to the format of the programs in the coming month,” said Mr Fuller, highlighting AMIC’s forward-looking approach to industry improvement and excellence.