The Knorr brand is to cut its ties with the National Chef of the Year competition and will stand down as headline sponsor after next year.
Unilever Foodsolutions, owner of the brand, said 2010 would be the tenth and last year it would be associated with the competition, which is run by the Craft Guild of Chefs, as it looks for other opportunities to support the industry.
Simon Marshall, managing director of Unilever Foodsolutions said: “Supporting culinary excellence remains a key part of our customer strategy. We have therefore started the process to look for fresh opportunities which engage more directly with chefs in all stages of their careers and culinary associations including of course, The Craft Guild of Chefs.”
The Guild`s chief executive Martin Bates told BigHospitality that the biennial event would still run, but it would need to find a new sponsor, or sponsors for the 2012 competition.
He said: "It`s been very good working with Knorr and they have been such a good supporter that the competition had become known as the Knorr National Chef of the Year. We are sure that we can find a single headline sponsor or preferably three or four non-competing sponsors to support the competition in the future. There`s no-one in the pipeline currently, but the phone has started to ring already with companies interested."
The news comes a day after the Guild held its Craft Guild of Chefs Awards - its biggest annual competition to praise chefs working in all areas of the industry.
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