Taking place at Belfast’s Titanic Exhibition Centre from 20-22 March 2018, next year’s competition is set to be the biggest yet, attracting butchers from a total of 12 countries.
The US team, Butchers of America, will be lead by team captain, Danny Johnson of Taylor’s Market in California. He will be joined by Paul Carras, also of Taylor’s Market, John Fink of the Whole Beast in California, Bryan Butler of Salt & Time in Texas, sausage expert Lothar Erbe of Lothar’s Gourmet Sausages in Virgina, and chef and charcuterie specialist Craig Deihl from South Carolina.
To help support their quest for global dominance, the team will be hosting a variety of fundraising events and have launched a GoFundMe page.
Team USA brings excitement to competition
“We have a really strong team this year, with members who are all educators and leaders in their field,” said Tia Harrison Holmes, co-founder of the Butchers Guild, who put the squad together.
“Our team represents several different regions of the United States and we are excited to bring each unique perspective to the table. Danny Johnson and his crew at Taylor’s Market won the Flying Knives Beef competition at Eat Real, they have over 40 years of combined experience in the retail space.
“Bryan Butler is winner of the Best Butcher in Texas competition and his butcher shop, Salt & Time, produces stunning, delicious products. Lothar Erbe was formally apprenticed and trained in butchery and sausage making, and has a huge following in his local market. Craigh Deihl is an award-winning charcuterie maker and James Beard-nominated chef. He makes by far the best charcuterie I have ever tasted in the United States.
“Jim Fink is passionate about open-fire cooking, and each and every one of our team members is an advocate for local meat and artisan products. Needless to say, Team USA is going to bring something new and exciting to the table.”
The Butchers of America will be hoping to give competition veterans Australia, New Zealand and Great Britain a run for their money. France, which made its inaugural appearance last year, will also be returning. Joining the US as first-timers for 2018 will be: Italy, Greece, Ireland, Germany, Spain, South Africa and Bulgaria.