NZ’s top Young Bread Baker announced

Media Release

2 November 2017Matthew Chin holds up the Young Bread Baker of the Year trophy after taking out the 2017 competition

An Auckland plant bread baker has won the 2017 Young Bread Baker of the Year Competition.

Matthew Chin of Quality Bakers Auckland receives a $10 000 research grant. Fascinated by the science and theory behind baking, Matt says he plans to use the grant to travel overseas and visit larger plant bakeries and ingredients manufacturers.

Runner-up Luke Rosemergy from Breadcraft in Masterton receives $5000 towards research, and Jacob Saunders of Rolleston Bakery in Canterbury has been invited to represent New Zealand at the Australian LA Judge Competition next year.

Judging Co-ordinator Tania Watson of the New Zealand Association of Bakers says she is impressed with the high calibre of contestants this year. “Both plant and craft bakery representatives have obviously put time and effort into preparing for the competition. They all confidently and professionally presented their research topic findings and the quality of baked goods produced during the practical session is excellent.”

The competition requires entrants to demonstrate their ability in three areas: a five hour practical baking exercise in which they bake a variety of bread based products, a 90 minute exam which tests their theoretical knowledge of baking technology, and a presentation on a given research topic.

Judge Everard Wijdeveld of NZ Bakels in Auckland, where the competition was held, says bread baking is a complex and often challenging trade. “Because of the variable nature of bread making ingredients, it’s not easy to make good quality bread all the time. Master bakers require a lot of knowledge, skill and passion.

“This year’s contestants have all shown these traits. Their recipe design, production planning, practical skills and finishing work were outstanding. They showed good technical knowledge and the ability to do complex product costing and production calculations. There is no doubt that these young bakers will enrich the New Zealand baking industry for many years to come. ”

Judge Mark Harris from Goodman Fielder says it is great to see the future of the baking industry becoming a chosen career path for young people. “I have been impressed with the high level of skill and confidence shown this year.”

Judge Grant Inns from Mauri says this year’s group has shown the highest standard yet. “This is a group of talented young bakers that are truly going to make their mark in the future. Their bakeries should be extremely proud of them.”

The Young Bread Baker of the Year is sponsored by the New Zealand Association of Bakers Inc. and is designed to promote excellence in people emerging from their training.


More about Matthew Chin: a baker and a boxerMatthew Chin in action at the Young bread Baker of the Year Competition

 Originally from Dunedin, Matt came to Auckland six months ago and is already making his mark. Starting out studying computer science at university, Matt says he soon realised he needed to do something else and began looking for a job. A role at Quality Bakers in Dunedin came up and after two weeks there he was offered a full time role, and after eight months, a Baking Apprenticeship.

Two years later, he headed to Auckland to take advantage of the opportunities available. He says learning the science and theory behind baking is the most interesting part of what he does. He would like to develop his interest in ingredients, research and product development.

Matthew is a keen boxer outside of work and enjoys competing. He says a baking competition and boxing require the same things: skills and a lot of preparation.

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For more information please contact:

Tania Watson – Judging Coordinator
New Zealand Association of Bakers
M: 021 1659949