Apple farmer Peter Chandler is celebrating after scooping the prestigious prize at the National Fruit show, which showcases Britain’s commercially grown top and soft fruit.
The centrepiece of the show, which is held at the Kent Event Centre, is the hotly-contested awards featuring 60 different categories showcasing the best of British fresh produce.
Chandler was showcasing why Jazz is so popular in terms of taste, flavour and crunch. Jazz scooped first and second prize in the ‘Tastiest Apple’ category, marking the third time in five years that Jazz has won the award.
The first prize Jazz was grown by Chandler and the team at Chandler and Dunn, a long-established farm in the East Kent landscape for more than 200 years.
The Jazz grown by Simon Bray of Monks Farms in Kent picked up second place in the contest.
“What a way to celebrate the start of the UK northern hemisphere Jazz season and celebrate the 10th anniversary of British grown Jazz,” said Gary Harrison, of Worldwide Fruit Ltd and the UK Commercial Manager for Jazz.
“We’re absolutely thrilled to see the variety claim the top two places in the category but the praise has to go to the Chandler and Dunn team for their hard work. The taste and quality of a Jazz is unlike any other and its rise since the first trees bared fruit in 2007 has been nothing short of meteoric.
“Winning this prestigious award will hopefully help introduce the variety to even more consumers and further cement the variety’s place as the ‘apple to watch’ in the coming years.”
Peter Chandler says his farm was one of the first UK growers to plant Jazz trees.
“It’s great to win this award as the variety hits its 10-year British milestone. Credit has to go to my team as they have worked their socks off, but Jazz has all the attributes a fruit grower wants so it’s a pleasure to grow.
“When it comes to taste, there’s no doubt it’s a winner and no surprise that its popularity grows year-on-year as do the number of trophies it wins.”
The Jazz journey
Jazz apples are a fusion of Braeburn and Royal Gala. The first British Jazz apple crop hit the shops in November 2007 with Greg Wallace helping grower Paul Mansfield to launch the variety.
A decade later and Jazz is the joint fastest-growing apple variety in the UK, recently overtaking Golden Delicious to become the sixth most popular variety with more than 125,000,000 consumed in 2016.
The retail value of the brand now stands at £44 million, an increase of 19% year on year.
Available at Aldi, Asda, Booths, Co-op, Lidl, Morrisons, Marks & Spencer, Ocado, Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Waitrose, Jazz had a brand refresh earlier this year. It is also grown in more than ten countries around the world under a closely controlled quality growing programme managed by T&G Global.
“The ‘tastiest apple’ category is always one of the most competitive awards at the show and one which all the growers value so it’s a great achievement for the Jazz variety to scoop first and second place. A huge hats off to Peter and the Chandler and Dunn team plus Simon Bray,” added Sarah Calcutt, chair of the National Fruit Show.