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Welsh bakers triumph in Bread Heroes Awards

Photo: Osian Jones, Tiptree World Bread Awards Hero with Brook Food for Wales. Credit: Henry Kenyon.

Osian Jones of CRWST was crowned the winner of the Tiptree World Bread Awards Heroes with Brook Food for Wales, in a special online awards evening on Tuesday 13 October 2020.

When Osian was forced to close his Crwst’s cafe in Cardigan as the country went into lockdown, he decided to adapt his business; providing door to door delivery so that he could keep his local community supplied with bread.

His weekly order consisted of 200 loaves. All of which were hand mixed and hand shaped by Osian himself. To fulfil the orders, on Thursdays and Fridays Osian would start work in the bakery at 1am.

In addition, he supported local pork producers, Myrddin Heritage, by providing bread for their ‘breakfast boxes’.

‘Osian worked extremely hard to provide the local community with bread over lockdown.’ says Catrin Jones, one of his nominators, ‘Despite the crazy working hours, he always maintained a positive attitude. Customers and the local community are always his number one priority!’

Matthew Reece of Tucker’s Bakery, Pontypridd was declared runner up for Wales. Matthew worked from 1.30am until 2.30pm every single day of lockdown to ensure the people of Pontypridd had the bread they needed.

‘Matthew single handedly supported his community throughout a difficult time during the global pandemic by both baking and serving all the produce.’ said one of his nominators,

In normal times, the Awards celebrate the bread; hundreds of loaves would be delivered for assessment by a panel of esteemed judges. Instead, in a special edition for 2020, the Awards recognise the people behind the loaves: the bakers, millers and farmers.

Hundreds of nominations for the Bread Heroes were sent in from across the UK. ‘All the nominees in this year’s Awards truly deserve recognition for their generous, considerate and often altruistic initiatives to help others.’ said Stephen Hallam, Chairman of the Judges.

12 regional winners were selected by the judging panel. One of the judges, Emma Freud, Executive Producer Comic Relief, said,  ‘These nominees were so well found – each of them have done remarkable things for their communities, using their talent with bread to make life easier for people who need support.  It was a seriously tough choice, but I am confident we got the right winners…’

‘The efforts of the bread community during these challenging times have been truly inspiring.’ said Scott Goodfellow, Joint Managing Director, Tiptree, ‘We are delighted that this year’s Awards have been able to shine a light on their incredible endeavours.’

An exhibition of portraits by photographer Henry Kenyon of the 12 Bread Heroes will be touring the UK, including a display at the City Food Lecture 2021, the annual lecture on the future of the food industry, organised by the seven food-related City of London livery companies.