Ashburton Meats has well and truly proved they’re producing some of the greatest butchers and apprentices, not only within Australia but in the world with Matt Tyquin taking out the 2022 World Butchers’ Apprentice at the 2022 World Butchers’ Challenge – also known as the Olympics of meat!
Owner of Ashburton Meats, Paul Klooster, has partnered with Sarina Russo Apprenticeships (SRA) and consultant Danielle Hole for around 13 years to consistently bring new apprentices into his business. The partnership has experienced some serious success with apprentices receiving multiple nominations and wins for Victorian Apprentice of the Year, competition wins throughout Australia and now an international win! Paul said he keeps returning to Danielle because of her easy nature, relaxed professionalism, expert and up-to-date knowledge and the eager apprentices she brings into his business.
Current apprentice, Matt Tyquin, had worked at Ashburton Meats for years as he completed his biomedicine degree. Even before he had graduated in 2020, he knew he wanted to find work in something far more hands on than the biomedicine field would allow. Shortly after, Matt worked with Danielle to get signed up into a butcher apprenticeship where he finally felt like he could get involved and embrace his creative side by trialling new and inventive cuts. The transition from university to an apprenticeship was seamless for Matt and was made even easier by the consistent bi-monthly check-in’s from SRA consultants to ensure he was feeling supported and happy in his apprenticeship.
When one of Ashburton Meats’ former apprentices was no longer eligible to compete in the World Butchers’ Challenge due to the pandemic postponing the competition for years, organisers reached out to Paul to discuss a replacement and fresh off his Victorian Apprentice of the Year win, Matt’s name was mentioned immediately. Matt’s TAFE trainers wholeheartedly agreed that Matt was ready for the world stage and the preparations begun!
With five months to get competition ready and the mentality of “no one wins a gold medal without putting the work in” driving them, Matt and Paul practiced in the early mornings, late at night and took barely any days off. Matt’s initial practice run time was over three and a half hours but he continued to work until he could complete his cuts within the competition time of two and a half hours.
The World Butchers’ Challenge was held in the Golden 1 Centre in Sacramento, California in early September 2022. Paul said he got goosebumps watching Matt perform in such a huge arena usually reserved for NBA basketball games and huge concerts and he always got a thrill seeing Matt’s face pop up on the big screens.
Matt is still in disbelief that he’s achieved so much only 18 months into his apprenticeship – we can’t wait to see what’s next!
Find out more about how to get into a trade by speaking to an SRA consultant on 13 15 59.