No Bones About it, Bonnie is the Best
Hard work has paid off for local butcher Bonnie Ewan after she took out the prestigious National Apprentice of the Year award at a gruelling five-day competition at Terrigal last month.
She beat six other state finalists during the program which included theory, practical assessment and a high pressure “Mystery Box” challenge which was held at the Australian Meat Industry Council.
“The top six finalists consisted of four men and two women (and) with all of us having a State Title under our belts, I knew I was really going up against the best,” Bonnie told The Beast.
“I worked for weeks practising and brainstorming my Mystery Box ideas. I mainly focused on heavy preparation and studying, constantly searching for new ways to modernise the classics.”
And that practise was certainly worth the effort with Bonnie finishing first in every category to convincingly win the title by more than 80 points.
Bonnie said that aside from competition there was a full schedule of activities, which included in-depth masterclasses, butcher shop tours, work experience throughout Sydney stores and a gala dinner after the final.
“The National Finals is something I will always cherish,” she said. “I made an amazing group of friends and acquired great new skills to help me further my career.
“I feel so lucky to have met such a fun and like-minded group of young butchers, the whole experience was fantastic. I highly encourage any young apprentice to enter their state competition, you never know just where it can take you.”
As a qualified butcher, Bonnie knows she is now in the big league and will have to compete against the country’s best professionals in future competitions.
As a butcher at Lucas Meats in Macpherson Street, Bronte, Bonnie said she has enjoyed the full support of the other staff, who played a major role in helping her win the 2019 Australian Meat Industry Apprentice of the Year for New South Wales.
“All of the staff and my TAFE teacher John have invested many years of hard training to get me to the level that I am today and I can gladly say my skills are a reflection of them,” Bonnie said.
“Holding the 2020 title for the National Apprentice Butcher of the Year is an amazing accomplishment. I couldn’t be happier to get that recognition and it was well worth all the hard work.”
Bonnie’s next goal was to be the National Butchers Challenge, which was scheduled to be held at the Royal Easter Show, but she will have to wait until next year to have a shot at that title.
But for now she is happy just to have a rest after being in the competition arena for the past two years, both in butchery and her other passion, special effects make-up, for which she has also received recognition.