Even against the backdrop of such uncertainty in the world right now the brilliance and talent we see from all your marmalade entries is truly uplifting and remarkable. With nearly 3000 jars from almost 40 countries in 2020 the diversity and beauty of your preserving work continues to shine at the Dalemain World Marmalade Awards.

The money that the Marmalade Awards raises for our charity Hospice at Home Carlisle – who provide free at-home palliative care nursing service for people who are suffering from life-threatening illnesses – is especially important right now and we are thankful that so many of you are able to help us support the hospice’s work. Also, as we encourage people overseas to send money instead to their local hospice, we hope that palliative care around the world is helped because of marmalade.

Just think, if every 340g jar of marmalade would spread about 15 slices of toast, then this years 2020 entries would probably give us about 750kg of marmalade (give or take for tiny or extra-large jars), and that could probably spread about 33,000 slices of toast. So 2020’s Dalemain World Marmalade Award entries would give you marmalade on toast for breakfast every day for 90 years! A lifetime of marmalade.

Supporting the Dalemain World Marmalade Awards are our sponsors – Fortnum & Mason and Thursday Cottage – who both are leaders in the best of British quality and innovation in food. Every year Fortnum’s produces & sells the winning home-made marmalade around the world, and this year we’re excited to announce that Jonathan Hamel Cooke’s double-gold winning Vale of Aleysbury Dark & Chunky Marmalade. “For me the combination of a very dark and almost bronze jelly”, said Jane Hasell-McCosh, Director and founder of the Dalemain World Marmalade Awards, “with a depth that the treacle can give without tasting it as a dominating ingredient. That’s skilful work to maintain the brightness and tart acidity of a great Seville marmalade and that what I hope we’re recognising here in Jonathan Hamel Cooke’s marmalade.” ”

Last year Beth Furnell’s pink grapefruit and passionfruit marmalade was sold by Fortnums – as Jonathan Hamel Cooke’s will be – to raise money from each jar sold for Hospice at Home Carlisle. With donations of 50p per jar sold Beth Furnell’s winning entry raised £3,600, an extraordinary 7,200 jars. “Here the combination of pink grapefruit and passion fruit had a lightness and true-marmalade allure.” said Jane. Passionfruit is such an excitingly bright flavour that it can dominate the subtlety of a delicate pink grapefruit so we were utterly impressed with the balance in Beth Furnell’s winning marmalade. I knew it would chime with people’s tastes, and mine too.”

On Saturday 14th March 2020 Beth Furnell presented the donations to Hospice at Home’s Dr Alison Miles (Chair) together with the golden winners cup provided by the the Worshipful Company of Fruiterers to be presented to this year’s winner: Jonathan Hamel Cooke, who has been entering the Marmalade Awards since 2007 and has won 53 Gold Awards and 10 Categories, including 3 previous wins for his Dark & Chunky. Inspired by his success and the feedback of the WI judges, he updated his ingredients and method in 2020, with fabulous results.

Jonathan says: ‘Having won various classes over the years, I thought my Marmalade was good, but possibly lacking in originality. I am therefore so delighted to have achieved Double Gold with the classic Dark and Chunky Marmalade, a particular favourite of mine. I like a sharp reduced sugar Marmalade with that old fashioned bitter taste. This year I have omitted lemons as the Seville orange abounds with pips for pectin and is very acid in its own right. Technical improvement was enabled every year by addressing the constructive comments from the W.I. Judges on the score cards. The ever elusive top prize had to be pursued!’