New Head Judge At World Butchers’ Challenge

David Lishman
David Lishman

The World Butchers' Challenge (WBC) has announced the new Head Judge for the next 2025 event, held in Paris, France, as Great Britain's David Lishman, previous three-time captain of the revered Team GB for WBC events across ten years.

Lishman was a highly involved member of the WBC team, involving Great Britain's Trade Board, that spearheaded the drive to bring an earlier version of the WBC event to Yorkshire, England, in 2014, where he also captained Team GB.

Known fondly as the Olympics of Butchery, the ninth WBC will be held at Paris Arena Sud 6, part of the impressive Paris Expo Exhibition Centre. The venue is gearing up to host the world's best handballers and weightlifters at the Paris 2024 Olympics.

Alongside business partner and daughter Emma Lishman, David owns Lishman's Butchers & Charcutiers - a traditional butchery business in the Yorkshire Dales of England - which won the coveted title of Best Butchers Shop of the Year for Great Britain in 2017.

Upon receiving the call about his nomination and appointment as Head Judge, Lishman said he was hugely honoured.

"I have admired how this event has grown to be the global contest it is now. I have big shoes to fill," said Lishman.

When passing on advice to teams already preparing for the 2025 WBC, Lishman said that as a judge, he naturally wanted to see traditional crafts and skills from the teams but with modern products and cuts that would entice the public to buy and try in the retail environment.

"Naturally, we want to see traditional crafts and skills from the teams but with modern products and cuts that would entice the public to buy and try in a retail environment.

"Be clean, efficient and avoid waste. Use every part available. The butcher must make the most of the carcass - which was once a living animal - and set an example to the rest of the meat industry that the product in front of them gets the respect it rightly deserves."

The Head Judge oversees a panel of judges by nominating one from each competing nation. This position ensures a smooth and fair judging process is conducted and can be relied upon.

Lishman will supersede former Head Judge and New Zealander Todd Heller, who has been a crucial part of the growth of the WBC from a grassroots trans-Tasman event to the largest butchery event on earth.

World Butchers' Challenge Chairman Rod Slater said Heller had played a pivotal role in shaping the WBC since its inception in 2011, ensuring that the global community reveres the competition as one of the best butchery events in the world.

Slater continued that the board wanted to thank Heller for his expertise, professionalism and commitment over the last 12 years.

"In the same vein, we welcome David Lishman into the role of Head Judge," said Slater.

"As someone who has already been a key part of the WBC community for many years, we are confident that David will bring that same expertise and commitment but with a new flair as the competition continues to grow and evolve globally."

Competitor entries are now open, with teams able to register online for Paris 2025.

More information on competition details, competing teams and tickets will be released in 2024. Stay updated with the latest news via the WBC website.

Friedr, Dick, and Anago proudly sponsor the 2025 World Butchers' Challenge.