Key dates & Schedule
Key dates & Schedule
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The RAS Young Farmer Challenge is the ultimate test of skill and ability, with young farmers showcasing their expertise in a series of on-farm challenges.
The RAS Young Farmer Challenge is the ultimate test of skill and ability, with young farmers showcasing their expertise in a series of on-farm challenges. This can be anything from animal handling to fencing, driving tractors, putting out fires, first aid, heavy lifting and transport challenges.
2016 RAS Young Farmer Challenge NSW Final Winners - Canberra Matt Sheehy Sam Brown Tara Smith Kimberley Sykes 2014 RAS Young Farmer Challenge NSW Final Winners - Crookwell Bec Hewitt Gearin Price Scott Kensit Jamie Boothman 2013 RAS Young Farmer Challenge NSW Final Winners - NAB Team Sarah Dreverman Greg Heffernan Josh Cochrane 2013 Regional Young Farmer Challenge, Bega NSW Winners - NAB Team Sarah Dreverman Greg Heffernan Josh Cochrane 2012 Regional Young Farmer Challenge, Borenore NSW Winners - Team Broke Aaron Nicholls Wade Peatman Georgie Redfern 2012 RAS Young Farmer Challenge NSW Final Winners - Camden West Rural Fire Brigade Scott Vale (Captain) Brenton Nicholson Timothy Boardman Robert Boardman 2011 Regional Young Farmer Challenge, Borenore NSW Winners - Trangie Tritons Lachlan Samuels Rodney McInnerney 2011 Young Farmer Challenge Winners - Colac Cow Tippers Matt Alford (Captain) Clynton Theodore Troy Errington Brenton Bishop 2010 Young Farmer Challenge Winners - 2009 Rural Achievers Shannon McCormack (Captain) Tim Stivens Tom Pearce Liz Pearson 2009 Young Farmer Challenge Winners - ASC AY Team Ian Pursehouse (Captain) Tom Green Samara Walmsley Garry Obrien
Words: Jodie Van Der Velden With the Easter holiday celebration just weeks away, there’s no doubt chocolate consumption in Australia will spike. Chocolate eggs, said to be an ancient symbol of new life and resurrection and celebration of spring returning, have been associated with this religious holiday since the early 19 th century in Europe. With chocolate on everyone’s minds and palates at this time of year, it’s timely to reflect on all things chocolate and where Australia sits in the chocolate world. The Australian chocolate industry has experienced a rapid evolution over the last decade, with Australian artisan chocolatiers producing as beautiful chocolate products as those found in the luxurious chocolateries of Europe. At the 2013 World Chocolate Masters competition, Australia won third place ahead of Italy (first place) and Netherlands (second place) as well as winning Best Architect of the world - globe. These results clearly highlight the quality of training and innovation found here in Australia. Contemporary Australian trends in chocolate are very much in line with current global trends. Consumers are continually becoming more discerning through increased health awareness and education. Whilst there are certainly still consumers that are satisfied with mass manufactured low grade chocolate products, there is a rapidly growing consumer group that is concerned with the ethics and sustainability behind growing and harvesting cacao, and the manufacturing of chocolate. Consumers are now interested in single origin and single plantation chocolates. These products are made from cacao beans grown in a single location or plantation and contain individual flavour profiles drawn from the cacao bean, rather than the addition of flavours. As the health benefits of chocolate are continually revealed, astute consumers are very conscious of artificial ingredients. There is a growing trend to choose quality over quantity, with consumers turning towards high-quality dark chocolate rather than milk and white chocolates which contain a high sugar, low cacao content. Favourable consumer attitudes towards higher quality chocolate products have caused a decline in demand for some mass manufactured lower grade chocolate products. This trend has resulted in more opportunities for boutique artisan chocolatiers to contribute to the market. Consumers have become more daring than ever before and are trying, and loving, unique flavour combinations, such as chilli and mango, lime and basil, saffron, and balsamic vinegar. The Sydney Royal Chocolate Competition is an ideal showcase for Australia’s chocolatiers. In my role as Chief Chocolate Judge, I’ve witnessed greater emphasis being placed upon innovation and the use of high quality natural ingredients from producers. To see beautifully crafted, innovative chocolate products that have been executed with outstanding technical expertise and skill, being rewarded with Sydney Royal Gold Medals is a very rewarding experience in itself. These awards are invaluable to the winner in acknowledging their outstanding product and encouraging further innovation to lead the Australian chocolate industry into the future. About Jodie Van Der Velden Jodie Van Der Velden is the Chair of Judges for the 2016 Callebaut Sydney Royal Show and has been Chief Judge of Sydney Royal Chocolate competitions since 2012. Ms Van Der Velden has 10 years’ experience as a professional chocolatier. Her passion for the craft has been rewarded through myriad accolades. Considerable time spent in cacao plantations all over the world, working to understand the raw product in its natural state, has contributed in no small part to Ms Van Der Velden’s superior palate and the success of Josophan’s Fine Chocolates, which she founded in 2005.
Previously at the Sydney Royal Easter Show… A red-tailed black cockatoo flew across the Amphitheatre and landed on the arm of a nervous looking young girl before a yellow-crested cockatoo swooped in and pinched $70 and a credit card from a stranger’s wallet… but no need to call the police, it was all part of the fantastic Feathered Friends Free Flight Bird Show. Feathered Friends is licensed by the Department of Primary Industries to educate and train wildlife, and presented at the Show to educate and entertain Showgoers. You can catch a performance every day of the Show, 1pm in The Amphitheatre and a word of advice – keep your wallet safely hidden in your pocket! The voices of 195 new Australians filled The Amphitheatre, “From this time forward, I pledge my loyalty to Australia and its people, whose democratic beliefs I share, whose rights and liberties I respect, and whose laws I will uphold and obey.” It was an emotional moment for the new citizens and the friends that had gathered to help wipe away the tears of joy and pride. Holding an Australian Citizenship Ceremony at the Show makes complete sense, in 1882 the Royal Agricultural Society was founded by immigrants to this country, some of the first settlers to Australia who were struggling to adapt to their new environment and the problems they were facing with crops and farming. They needed to band together and to help each other. One of the aims of the Society was to exchange ideas and practices. In their second year, they put on a Show, which became an annual event and was a gathering to encourage and promote the rural industry. The Show also gave farmers the opportunity to come together and gain first-hand knowledge of farming trends and advances. In the past decade, many new immigrants have worked in the agricultural sector, helping to redress labour shortages and most importantly – adding new skills and innovative insights. Immigrants, moving out to rural areas, have re-energised many regional and rural towns. The agricultural industry warmly welcomes immigrants and the insights they can bring to farming. Acceptance and generosity are trademarks of our farming and regional communities. It was a privilege to watch 195 new citizens officially call Australia home. Why 195? It’s the number of years that the RAS has existed. Coming up today at the Sydney Royal Easter Show… It’s Senior’s Day! Not only do Seniors ride FREE with a paying child on selected rides in the Kids’ Carnival and Coca-Cola Carnival, The Amphitheatre lawn is the place to go if you’re a Senior’s Card holder. Enjoy a free cup of tea or coffee, have a chat with the helpful staff from 5 Ombudsman schemes, seniors’ services including Legal Aid and the friendly faces from BaptistCare and National Seniors Australia. There’s also giveaways, free entertainment and some amazing prizes to be won!
Previously at the Sydney Royal Easter Show… Olive oil was first judged at the Show in 1869 in a class called ‘’Oilmen’s Stores’’ in the Articles of Colonial Manufacture section. This year an olive oil was awarded the 2016 Royal Agricultural Society of NSW (RAS) President’s Medal. A President’s Medal winner must not only show a market leading product and quality but an operation which strictly observes environmental sustainability in its production practices. Cobram Estate’s road to the 2016 President’s Medal followed three wins in the 2016 Sydney Royal Olive Oil awards. Cobram Estate won for Best Olive Oil, Champion Varietal Extra Virgin Olive Oil and ultimately “Best In Show” Olive Oil or Olive Product. The President’s Medal recognises the recipient as the nation’s “best of the best” across the food and wine sectors judged through the Sydney Royal competitions. The vision of horticulturalists Rob McGavin and Paul Riordan, Cobram Estate produces and markets supreme quality olive oils for Australian and international consumption. Accepting the award, co-founder of Cobram Estate Rob McGavin expressed his gratitude; “We are really humbled and honoured to win this prestigious award,” he said. “What we are especially proud of is that the quality of what we are able to produce at Cobram Estate is readily available to everyone in Australia at an affordable price,” Mr McGavin said. Coming up today at the Sydney Royal Easter Show… In 1932, livestock in the Grand Parade formed the shape of the Sydney Harbour Bridge to celebrate its opening. This year, the livestock may not position themselves into a particular shape, but they will certainly find a place in your heart… or your national pride. The final Grand Parade for the 2017 Show is on today at Spotless Stadium at 4.15pm. Dog competitions featured early in the history of the Show. The 1869 catalogue listed classes for Bloodhounds, Newfoundlands, Retrievers, Pointers, Setters, Spaniels, Greyhounds, Italian Greyhounds, Skye Terriers, English Terriers, Bulldogs, Sheepdogs and even Kangaroos. The 14 April 2017 catalogue lists the following for judging: Tibetan Spaniel, Japanese Chin, Australian Silky terrier, Norfolk Terrier, St Bernard, Pug and more. Attracting over 4,000 entries across Conformation, Agility, Obedience, Junior Handler, and Sweepstake classes, the Purina Pro Plan Sydney Royal Dog Show is officially the largest canine competition in Australia with an impeccable global reputation. The Show is a great place to talk to breeders about and work out if a particular breed is right for you. Pity they bounced kangaroos out of the competition!
Previously at the Sydney Royal Easter Show… Under the watchful gaze of Delta, Seal, Kelly Rowland and Boy George the ladies lined up for the Final of the 300mm Ladies Single Handed Sawing Championship in the Channel 9 Woodchop Stadium… it was taken out by the competitor from the USA.. so then the boys lined up for the First Division 350mm Underhand Handicap and it was taken out by the competitor from Canada. When the chips are down we obviously need more home-grown spectators cheering our axemen and women to victory! Coming up today at the Sydney Royal Easter Show… George the Farmer is the Australian farming world’s song and dance man, and he was created especially for children. He is larger than life, full of fun and appearing at the Show with terrific messages about agriculture and life on a farm. Catch him in the Woolworths Fresh Food Farm today. The Land Sydney Royal Showgirls will be honoured with a parade at Spotless Stadium at 5.50pm. So far they’ve cuddled pigs, fed sheep, met a whole lot of people and memorised a whole lot of names, posed for more photos than they will ever remember and their smiles, charm and friendliness have been endless. These young ladies are absolutely passionate about agriculture and deserve a big crowd giving them a wave!
The Calgary Stampede is Canada’s spectacular celebration of western heritage and values, 10 days of rodeos, agricultural competitions, chuckwagon races, and the famous International Livestock Auctioneer Championships. For 29 years the fastest mouths on the land have won their way into the Championship, to be judged on rhythm, clarity, voice control, and livestock knowledge, as well as their ability to spot bids and conduct a sale. Only three times over the history of the competition has the title of Rookie of the Year left Canada, and all three times the Championship belt buckle has flown to a new home in Australia! In 1999 Luke Scicluna from NSW won the title. In 2016, Ronnie Dix from South Australia took out the title, and in 2017, the Calgary Stampede International Auctioneer Championship Rookie of the Year title was won by Lincoln McKinlay from Queensland. Ronnie Dix and Lincoln McKinlay both entered the competition as part of their prize package as winners of the Australian Livestock and Property Agents Association (ALPA) National Young Auctioneers Competition at the Sydney Royal Easter Show. Each year the best young auctioneers from around the country travel to Sydney to compete in the ALPA Young Auctioneers Competition. It is an opportunity to display their passion and dedication, and to gain exposure at a state and national level. The win this year at the Sydney Royal Easter Show and the ticket to Calgary were pretty special for Lincoln. “It’s somewhere I’ve always dreamed of going and ending up, it was super special for me to win the Australian competition, let alone to go and compete with the best in the world on such a big stage like the Calgary Stampede,” he said.
A common denominator among this year’s NSW Rural Achievers was a passion for sharing the value of Australian agriculture with young urban consumers. For almost 30 years the RAS has run the program recognising future leaders aged 20-29 who are striving to make an impact in their local community and rural Australia. The 2017 award recipients were Emily Clapham, Ilford; Rebecca Cope, Narrabri; Thomas Dewhurst, Cowra; Jarrod Grabham, Kelso; Elisabeth Munn, Leeton; Ashley Norval, Bywong; Amy Walker, Hovell’s Creek and Cameron Ward, Gunnedah. Over the next 12 months, all participants will be provided with skills and opportunities including networking with rural leaders to become trailblazers in agriculture or their communities. Of the eight awardees, Emily Clapham was nominated to represent NSW at the National Rural Ambassador Award. Clapham is working as a medical registrar in the Hunter New England local health district and endeavours to improve specialist care in rural and regional areas. “I would love to see the link between healthcare and agriculture raised with politicians and key stakeholders in both sectors to facilitate the increased infrastructure, jobs and services required to improve and support the agricultural industry and rural communities,” Clapham says.
Wondering what to look for in wine for the rest of 2017? The KPMG Sydney Royal Wine Show judges have done the work for you so no matter which wine region or territory you would like to support, here are some of the top selections by State. For a full list of the 2017 KPMG Sydney Royal Wine Show medal winners visit Australia's Best Producers . NSW STEVENS SEMILLON 2011, Tyrell’s Vineyards Pty Ltd NOBLE ONE 2015, De Bortoli Wines PEPPER SHIRAZ 2013, Montoro Wines VAT 1 SEMILLON 2017, Tyrell’s Vineyards Pty Ltd VAT 47 CHARDONNAY 2013, Tyrell’s Vineyards Pty Ltd BRUT TRADITIONELLE NV, Centennial Vineyards CATO TEMPRANILLO 2015, Moppity Vineyards VIC OLD PREMIUM LIQUEUR TOPAQUE NV, Morris Wines CELLAR ONE LIQUEUR TOPAQUE NV, Morris Wines OLD PREMIUM MUSCAT NV, Morris Wines VP 2013, Morris Wines AMEN BREAK CHARDONNAY 2015, Clonal Brothers PENNON HILL CHARDONNAY 2016, Montalto Vineyard & Olive Grove GREAT WESTERN CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2015, Best’s Wines Pty Ltd SA RIESLINGFREAK No. 3 CLARE VALLEY RIESLING 2017, John Hughes Wines MATTSCHOSS SINGLE VINEYARD EDEN VALLEY SHIRAZ 2015, St Hallett PEPPERJACK SPARKLING SHIRAZ NV, W Salter And Son THE MARL SHIRAZ 2016, Hentley Farm AGED RELEASE RIESLING 2013, Penfolds Wines Pty Ltd CHRONICLES 7 th GREEN CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2016, Hardys S.C. PANNELL BARBERA 2016, Stephen Pannell Wines Pty Ltd WA SAUVIGNON BLANC 2017, Miles From Nowhere Winemakers SAUVIGNON BLANC RESERVE 2016, Redgate Wines SRS WALLCLIFFE CHARDONNAY 2016, Flametree Wines DJL SAUVIGNON BLANC SEMILLON 2016, Xanadu Wines MERLOT 2016, Amberley Wines REDBROOK CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2014, Evans & Tate VERSE 1 CABERNET MERLOT 2015, Brookland Valley TAS/ACT GRAND VINTAGE 2008, House of Arras (TAS) PINOT NOIR 2016, Meadowbank Wines (TAS) ESTATE PINOT NOIR 2015, Gala Estate Vineyard (TAS) BRUT ROSÉ 2013, Clover Hill (TAS) 660 CANBERRA SHIRAZ 2016, McWilliam’s Wines Group Pty Ltd (ACT) 1877 SHIRAZ 2015, McWilliam’s Wines Group Pty Ltd (ACT) DEVIL’S CORNER MT AMOS PINOT NOIR 2015, Brown Brothers Tasmania (TAS)
Spoil dad with these scrumdiddlyumptious selections from the 2016 Sydney Royal Wine, Dairy and Fine Food Shows. BEER Gold American Pale Ale www.napoleonebrewers.com.au Napoleone Brewers, Coldstream NSW 3770 Gold Silent Knight Porter www.mobrewing.com.au Modus Operandi Brewing, Mona Vale 2567 Champion Lovedale Lager www.sydneybrewery.com Sydney Brewery, Lovedale NSW 2325 WINE Trophy 2014 Second Innings Malbec www.bleasdale.com.au Blesadale Vineyards, Langhorne Creek SA 5255 Trophy 2014 CCS Shiraz www.chalkerscrossing.com.au Chalkers Crossing, Young NSW 2594 CHEESE Gold Heritage Vintage www.begacheese.com.au Bega Cheese, Bega NSW 2550 BACON Gold Canadian Style Maple Bacon www.germanbutchery.com.au German Butchery, Mona Vale NSW 2103 LAMB Champion Grass Fed Lamb www.millyhill.com.au Milly Hill Lamb Pty Ltd, Armidale NSW 2350 BEEF Champion Grass Fed Beef www.bindareebeef.com.au Bindaree Beef Pty Ltd, Sydney NSW 2000 OLIVE OIL Champion Australian Extra Virgin Olive Oil www.cobramestate.com.au Cobram Estate, Lara VIC 3212 COFFEE Best in Show Kenya www.mycuppa.com.au Carlini Coffee Company, Ashburton VIC 3147
Two minutes and 40 seconds is all it takes to cook the perfect Wagyu steak. Carefully sliced to 10mm thickness and passing through the cooking chamber before resting for exactly two minutes, the steak was at its optimum flavour point. The fatty, marbled flesh tasted rich and gently sweet, with a lingering savoury taste. The judges only got a slither of wagyu, enough to give it a score but not enough to feel satisfied and full. That was lucky because they had to leave room in their bellies for the Grass Fed Beef and the Grain Fed Beef. Pleased by the very high standard of entries in the Sydney Royal Branded Beef , Branded Lamb and Branded Pork competitions, Chair of Judges George Ujvary was happy to welcome university student Sophie Ward for her first experience as a Sydney Royal judge. Sophie is currently finalising her Honours in Animal Science at Roseworthy College in South Australia and hopes to go on to complete her PHD in Sow Welfare. Sophie’s area of interest is the influence of the living conditions of pigs on the quality of the meat. “It was pretty incredible to taste such sweet flavoursome and tender pieces of pork,” said Sophie, “I would have loved to know about the living conditions from the entries afterwards, as well as the feed they were given as some of the flavours were just incredible.” Christmas dinner is looking good this year with such positive feedback from the Sydney Royal Branded Beef , Branded Lamb and Branded Pork competitions.
Previously at the Sydney Royal Easter Show… Murray Wilkinson used nothing but whistles to put cattle through an obstacle course on Spotless Stadium. No, the cattle weren’t responding to the whistling, Murray’s working dogs were doing all the work. A small herd of 7 or 8 is easy for these dogs at the Show – they are used to moving 13000 head of cattle on the Packer family owned Ellerston Pastoral Company located east of Scone, NSW. Taking time off work the dogs, and Murray, have moved to the Show for two weeks to let city folk see exactly what a working dog is supposed to do. Each dog responds to a personalised whistled command… yes, Zac will sit patiently whilst Merle moves the cattle, but once Zac hears his whistle up he jumps and takes over or assists Chime and Boo with their moves! If you’re having trouble getting your dog to sit or stand still, perhaps you should have a talk to Murray or at least teach yourself how to whistle. Catch Murray Wilkinson and His Working Dogs in Spotless Stadium any day at the Show. Coming up today at the Sydney Royal Easter Show… Cartoon characters are taking over The Amphitheatre… Off the back of DreamWorks' movie release, the stars of Trolls - Poppy and Branch - will bring music, rainbows and friendship to audiences in a live-action show. Poppy has a song in her heart; she knows life is all about cupcakes and rainbows. Meanwhile, Branch is very cautious and careful but is always ready for anything – except perhaps for Poppy’s personality! Poppy and Branch might have their ups and downs, but they always make friends and understand each other in the end. You’ll find them singing and dancing in the Amphitheatre today. What happens when Tweety Bird and Daffy Duck run away and join the circus? Families with young children will find out in the Looney Tunes Circus Spectacular. It’s filled with amazing aerial acts including trapeze, silks, comedy routines, clowns, hula hoops, contortion and more.The 30-minute performance, to be held in The Amphitheatre, is all about strength, balance and beauty as stars of the Looney Tunes world defy gravity.
RAS Foundation Scholarships provide a financial helping hand to assist students achieve their education goals. Students with a passion for rural issues and a commitment to playing a part in shaping the future of rural and regional NSW are encouraged to apply. Scholarships are open to students of any age and embrace a diverse range of tertiary or vocation, education and training studies. Amongst the 64 Rural Scholarship recipients for 2017 are the following students… Ryley Wickham, 17-years-old, has travelled 240kms from his hometown of Goonoo Goonoo to study a Certificate IV Agriculture at Tocal College. Ryley believes the future of farming and the ability to maximise the potential of the land lies in innovative technology. Kelsea Boots, 23-years-old, has relocated from Camden to Orange in order to complete her Bachelor of Dental Science at Charles Sturt University. The urgent need for rural health practitioners drives Kelsea’s goal of establishing a flying dental service to provide essential oral care to remote areas of Australia. Samuel Scarlett, 20-years-old, has moved from Cooma to Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga in order to study a Bachelor of Animal Science (Honours). Samuel wants to keep the merino industry thriving by investigating the role of genetics and nutrition in wool. Anne Johnston, 21-years-old, has transferred 400kms from home in Moree to study at the University of New England, Armidale. Anne hopes her Bachelor of Education (K-12) will enable her to teach in a rural community and help to keep youth thriving in rural towns.
There are small choices we make in our day to days lives that can change the course of things to come. Some are as simple as purchasing a latte to get you through the next two hours of your lecture, and others are far more monumental. One of these choices was the decision to apply for the JB Fairfax Award for Rural Journalism. I submitted my application thinking there may not be much of chance of winning the scholarship but at least I’d given it my best shot. It was this small decision that quickly turned into one of the best experiences of my life to date. As a part of the scholarship, I travelled down to Sydney to participate in the Sydney Royal Easter Show internship program - a fast paced two-week glimpse into the world of media. With a healthy dose of nerves, I braved the city transport and found my way to Sydney Olympic Park, where I would spend the next fortnight working in and amongst the Show. As a third and final year journalism student, the opportunities the internship program offered were unlike any other work placement I could have dreamed of. Not only did the program enable me to complete a whole unit of my degree in just two weeks, it also encouraged me to create networks that will be invaluable for an entry level journalist like myself looking to apply for jobs in the coming year. Meeting John Fairfax was definitely one of the most valuable and defining moments of my time in Sydney. Working with an array of media outlets, from television and radio to print media, I was also able to gain immeasurable experience in the journalism field as well as enhance my writing and organisation skills through mentoring. The Royal Agricultural Society and the Cox Inall staff involved in the program were knowledgeable, patient, friendly and eager to get me involved in every aspect of the job. Each and every day at the Sydney Royal Easter Show brought something new, challenging and exciting, whether it was being a part of a live television broadcast or assisting in a photoshoot. Every morning I was eager to see what the day would bring, what skills I would learn and who I would meet. During my first week of interning, I was lucky enough to be assigned to work with the GWS Giants AFL team and help the team film for their online content. This was definitely a fun night of work, watching the players battle it out on the giant slide before braving the horror house. Hanging out with the team was something I never imagined would be on my job criteria, so I was absolutely stoked to have done it as a part of my internship. Another stand out moment was starring on Sunrise with my fellow intern, Cara who was in Australia as a part of her American study abroad program. This was her claim to Australian fame, and mine I should add, even if we were in the background. But my most memorable experience of the two weeks was definitely assisting the ABC crew film an episode of Australia Wide, a television program I have long adored. I was able to see how an episode was scripted, produced, filmed and presented. On top of this, I was able to meet the wonderful host, Yassmin Abdel-Magied. As a student from the regional town of Singleton, these experiences would never have been available in my hometown which is why the program was so valuable for me. If I hadn’t participated in the program, I would never have been able to gain such a significant level of experience in so many different fields of media at such an early stage in my career. Aside from the professional benefits of the program, it was a fantastic opportunity to meet like-minded people who share similar aspirations and goals. Through interning I have made life-long friendships with people from all across the state, and even as far as New York City. Having these friends definitely made the experience, and the long train trips, all the more memorable. The whole internship was an experience I will cherish for a long time, and I couldn’t recommend it enough to other university students considering work placement. I give my appreciation and thanks to everyone who played a part in making the JB Fairfax scholarship and Sydney Royal Easter Show internship program possible.
As cider is made from apples, perry is made from pears. And award-winning beer is made from blood, sweat and yeast! The Sydney Royal Beer & Cider Show is open for entries now, but you’ll need to get your hops on – entries close on 11 July. Supporting the Australian Beer & Cider industry, by attracting the very best professionals as Judges and Stewards and providing an excellent environment for networking and professional development to all participants, the competition promotes and rewards excellence in the Australian beverage industry. Previous Sydney Royal Beer & Cider Show winners include Sydney Brewery, Matilda Bay, Redoak and Murray’s Craft Brewing Co. All exhibits are of Australian origin, brewed in Australia and with all business names registered in Australia. All Cider and Perry Exhibits must be made using Australian-grown apples and pears. No additional flavours are allowed to be added. At Sydney Royal the judges don’t only taste and rate each exhibit, they also provide individual feedback to every exhibitor. Sydney Royal Beer & Cider Show exhibitors have included Bridge Road Brewers, Franklin Cider Company, 4 Pines Brewing Co. and Lion Australia, with entry numbers increasing over the past ten years of competition. This is an outstanding opportunity to for beer, cider and perry producers and brewers to benchmark their product against competitors and draw attention to their beverages. As well as pride and prestige, a Sydney Royal win provides a springboard to increase returns. All winners receive Sydney Royal medal or trophy artwork designed to be used across a wide range of marketing collateral. There is also the opportunity to present and promote medal-winning products at the Sydney Royal Easter Show – an event that attracts on average 850,000 visitors every year, and the opportunity to be handpicked by Sydney Showground to supply your medal-winning product at hundreds of events that happen on site throughout the year. The Sydney Royal Beer & Cider Show – entries close 11 July, judging takes place 19 September, awards night 22 September… find out more at www.rasnsw.com.au/beercider and discover if beauty truly is in the eye of the beer holder.
Previously at the Sydney Royal Easter Show… The final Grand Parade was a showstopper – Spotless Stadium was packed to the rafters as Showgoers in the thousands stopped to silently applaud the cattle, horses, sheep, woodchoppers, officials and more… and to thank them for their hospitality during the Show. Where else in the world can you talk to a horse, pat a lamb, watch a cow get milked, smile at a cowboy, chat to a farmer and remind yourself of the sheer beauty of this land and its glorious produce? The smiling faces in the crowd are all the applause the Grand Parade needs - the silence is appreciated by the animals and their handlers because they are used to quiet times on the farm! Coming up today at the Sydney Royal Easter Show… Alpacas were first introduced into Australia in 1989 and by 2001 there were 40,000 of them in Australia! Today at the Show you can Walk an Alpaca – just make your way to the Cattle & Alpaca Pavilion. Alpacas can weigh up to 70kg and stand at about 1 metre (to the shoulder) so young children may need a hand with the reins. Alpacas like to cluck and hum when they are happy… and they are extremely photogenic! Sheep shearing is quite possible the most iconic activity in rural Australia (although the drovers may have something to say about that!) In 1969, Australia recorded its biggest ever wool clip of over 923,000,000 kg. Today there’s sheep shearing in The Daily Telegraph Paddock – you’ll laugh at tales of life on the land and the goings-on in the shearing sheds. Each session some lucky audience members are invited to help take the clippers to a woolly sheep, as the experts explain the tricks of the trade. Why not be a part of 2017’s wool clip!
What constitutes a well-trained palate for beer tasting and judging? The judging panel for the Sydney Royal Beer & Cider Show comprises a combination of beer & cider producers, industry educators and communicators, brewers, industry professionals, sommeliers, retailers and journalists. Each judge is an expert, with an appreciation prepared by years of professional experience. And what exactly are they tasting for in blind judging of beer, cider and perry? Drinkability is important – do you want to drink some more and do you actually like it. Overall, the exhibit is judged on Appearance, Aroma, Flavour, Technical Merit, and Style. When it comes to beer, head retention is amongst the criteria judged, clarity and colour are counted, and hop character is also important. The criteria for cider and perry judging include finish and carbonation, fruit character in the aroma, and acid/fruit/sugar balance. The correct balance of taste, aroma and appearance for the style can mean the difference between a Gold, Silver or Bronze medal for beer, cider and perry exhibits. At Sydney Royal, the judges don’t only taste and rate each product but they provide individual feedback to every exhibitor. This alone is a tremendous reason to enter but coupled with the opportunity to benchmark your product against others and to receive recognition from industry peers, participation is more than rewarded. Neal Cameron, Chair of Judges is the developer and teacher of the Certificate III in Microbrewing at TAFE NSW – Sydney Institute. Neil is also Technical Director for Brewtique, specialising in brewing equipment installs around Australia and Asia. When asked what he would spend his last $10 on, Neal answered: “A decent craft beer, naturally.” And if you’re wondering, as apples are to cider, so pears are to perry.