Tim French (Head Buyer, Fortnum & Mason), Jane Hasell-McCosh (Founder), Jo Aldhouse (Double Gold Home-made Winner), Karen Jankel (MD Paddington & Daughter of Michael Bond) and Martin Grant (MD of Mackays)

MARMALADE MOST TRAVELLED; WINNING MARMALADE MAKERS FROM ALL OVER THE GLOBE, AS DIZZYING ARRAY OF COUNTRIES CLAIM MULTIPLE AWARDS

World’s Best Marmalades Announced at 2016 Marmalade Festival

The World’s Original Marmalade Awards, which have been quietly gathering momentum across the globe for the last decade, have announced their winners for the 11th annual event, taking place at Dalemain Mansion near Penrith.

With nearly 3,000 entries including 160 overseas homemade entries – not counting the MarmalAshes – and many more Artisan jars from as far afield as South Africa, Korea and Singapore, 2016 has proven that marmalade can no longer be seen as a quaint British spread. With flavours and entries from all over the world, it is truly an international obsession.

HOMEMADE AWARDS – DOUBLE GOLD WINNER – NOW BEING STOCKED IN FORTNUM & MASON

Although the standard of the homemade awards reached unheard of heights this year, the judges were unanimous in their praise of the Double Gold winning marmalade, Marmalade with Skye single malt whisky, made by Jo Aldhouse in Oxford. The secret? Oranges from the most magical place in the world for marmalade lovers – the Marmalade Festival, of course. Using Sevilles she collected from the 2015 Awards, where they were given as a present to visitors, Jo has cooked up an absolute storm. With her marmalade on sale across the festival weekend, the produce really has gone full circle, back to where it all began, at the heart of the marmalade world.

Jo Aldhouse said: “I’m really pleased and excited to have won! It was rather down to luck, Dalemain were giving festival visitors those lovely oranges last year, and I froze some. I used them for an early batch and added some good whisky; using a single malt for marmalade is justifiable! Making marmalade is very cheering, and I am so impressed with the fundraising side of the Festival. I opted for my entry fee to go to Sobell House Hospice in Oxford and I’d love to get together with other Oxford marmalade makers and do the same next year.”

The Homemades have been a riot of places and flavours this year, with extraordinary marmalade entered from the Bahamas, Slovakia, New Zealand and Germany, to name but a few. Japanese entries have skyrocketed, and Atsuko Hayashi has taken a Gold Award for a second time, whilst Portugal and Australia also provided Gold winners, with classic Seville flavours that proved irresistible. Family marmalade makers and key sponsors Mackays themselves export to over 50 countries across Asia, Australasia, Europe, America and the Middle East, proving that the championing of marmalade abroad has clearly been a huge success.

It may seem that the Scots, who triumphed in 2015 with two Double Golds, have been pipped to the post this time around – but note the key ingredient of the winning marmalade and think again. Once more, they are proving that they are champion marmalade makers, and with record Scottish entries and 2 of the Gold homemade winners hailing from Scotland, it doesn’t look like they are set to be de-throned any time soon.

Martin Grant, Managing Director, Mackays comments: “The worldwide appeal of marmalade is undeniable and these awards are testament to that. We export our marmalade, which we still make the authentic way using copper pans, all over the world, so we already knew that other countries have an appetite for it. However, it wasn’t until we started supporting this event that we appreciated just how many people in continents such as Asia and the Middle East are making it at home – it’s great to see. Mackays is proud to be supporting this event for another year.”

ARTISAN

The Artisan judges for 2016 were a prestigious panel of food industry experts, presided over by the most famous lover of marmalade, Paddington himself. Two Artisan marmalade producers were awarded DOUBLE GOLD gongs for their delicious, yet unusual marmalades. The Artisan Kitchen, from Gloucestershire, impressed the judges with the delicious addition of Aperol, whilst Lady Waterford Preserves added beetroot for an earthy, savoury spread that received unanimous praise. Both are now being sold at Fortnum & Mason.

Three other marmalade maestros will also have their winning recipes stocked in Fortnum & Mason in Piccadilly. Tatsuta has ensured that Fortnums will be stocking their marmalade all the way from Japan, with their GOLD winning Yuzu marmalade proving too tasty to resist, whilst Clare’s Preserves took home a GOLD Award for their Dartmoor honey, a smooth and delicious flavour with ginger for added zing; and for a second year Galore! Foods are being stocked at Fortnum & Mason for their exceptional fruity and tangy GOLD winning Blood Orange Marmalade. Other incredible worldwide marmalades to win the gold are Awani’s Lime Marmalade with Fresh Ginger, from Bali, in Indonesia and a delicious kinkan and caramel Chinese orange entry from Mitsukoji, in Japan. Many of the overseas winners have flown in for the awards and to attend the festival.

Karen Jankel, daughter of Paddington Bear author Michael Bond comments: “Paddington is famous around the world for his love of marmalade and so it’s very pleasing to know that so many of the entries this year have come from the other side of the globe. Paddington usually enjoys traditional Seville orange marmalade in his sandwiches but he’s always keen to try anything new and he thinks that the ingredients used in some of GOLD award winning entries from Japan and Thailand sound particularly interesting.”

HOTEL, B&B & RESTAURANT

With the addition of Award roundels, and the opportunity to be judged by our esteemed Artisan judges, the bar was set higher than ever for the B&B entries this year. There were two clear DOUBLE GOLD winners, with The Old Excise House adding delicious Lagavulin whisky, and the Maisie Suite in Shropshire serving up a fruity Seville, kumquat and apricot marmalade that the judges loved.

As ever, the letters and stories accompanying the marmalades made for a great deal of joy in the unwrapping, with our volunteers spending countless hours exploring all of the jars before tasting, with beautiful cross stitching from the Czech Republic standing alongside giant jars from Japan. Local marmalades have also been well represented, with Cumbrians bringing in a number of the homemade awards, and such Lakeland inspired delicacies as ‘Viking Marmalade with hedgerow fruits & chestnuts’ being entered. Nearly 3,000 homemade jars have been entered, with the full amount going to charity. Every jar is treasured and will be on display in the state rooms in all their glory at Dalemain over the festival weekend and for 3 weeks afterwards.

The 2016 awards new categories also proved particularly popular with fantastic entries for the Hairdressers category, and ever-increasing entry numbers for the MacNab (Marmalade to be served with Savoury Food), which is growing apace and looks set to be the future of marmalade. Once again, the Marmalade Awards have proven themselves as THE award for marmalade with entrants of all ages, from all over the world, taking part in 2016. With the festival expanding to take place over three venues, in an exciting move that sees the town of Penrith and Rheged visitor’s centre hosting a range of marmalade activities over the Festival weekend, these awards look set to reach even greater heights in the years to come.

Marmalade Awards & Festival organiser, Jane Hasell-McCosh, said: “We are delighted at the success of working with our Festival Partners and I can’t thank them enough – Rheged, Penrith and Jim Walker for making this happen, moving the Festival into the next Decade and helping us to celebrate and champion marmalade. Our sponsors have one again been fantastic, united by a love of marmalade, and the result has been extraordinary.”

For more details of all the winners, both amateur and artisan, of this year’s Awards, go to: www.marmaladeawards.com

For further information or if you would like to request an interview with the organiser or one of the winners, please contact

Florence Lindeman: marketing@damelain.com / 01768486450