January 15, 2024

2024 SA Dairy Championships: A Timeline of Excellence in Dairy Industry

The South African Dairy Championships is a prestigious event aimed at recognizing and rewarding the quality of dairy products. This initiative greatly contributes to promoting excellence within the dairy industry, simultaneously elevating its profile among consumers. The increasing participation, with more than 900 entries from around 70 producers annually, is a testament to the confidence dairy processors place in the Championships.

Key Entry Dates

The 2024 edition of the SA Dairy Championships has its schedule set, with entries opening on 15 January and closing on 5 February 2024. Following the closure of entries, the products for the competition will be received on 4 – 5 March 2024.

The judging process, a highlight of the event, will take place on 7 – 8 March 2024 at the Eensgezind Venue in Durbanville. Culminating the event, the SA Dairy Awards Dinner is set to be held on 25 April 2024, also at the Eensgezind Venue in Durbanville.

South African Dairy Championships South African Dairy Championships SA Dairy Championships

Awards and Recognition

SA Dairy Product of the Year Award: This award is given to the product that scores the highest overall points in the Championships.

Qualité Award: This mark of excellence is reserved for products that score a minimum of 26 out of 30 on the international scorecard. It is a symbol of exceptional quality, and recipients can display a distinctive logo supported by main retailers in South Africa.

SA Champion Award: The Championships include 10 categories and over 100 classes for end products in the dairy processing line. The winner in each class is awarded the title of SA Champion.

Categories and Classes

The Championships consist of ten categories (cheese, butter, yogurt, cottage cheese, ice cream, cultured and flavoured milk, dairy desserts, dairy dips, milk and UHT milk, cream) and more than 100 classes for end products in the dairy industry. The cheese category is notably the largest, with a significant growth in goat’s milk and continental cheeses, driven by increasing demand and innovation among cheesemakers.

Notably, an Ayrshire Mozzarella made for Woolworths by RFG Foods was crowned the Dairy Product of the Year at the 2023 South African Dairy Awards.  This event marked the 190th edition of the SA Dairy Championships, the biggest and oldest dairy competition in Africa.

For more information visit www.cheesesa.co.za/about-the-sa-dairy-championships/