The annual American Association of Meat Processors Convention and Supplier’s Exposition routinely brings together hundreds of small meat processors to learn about regulatory issues, consumer trends and processing advice. For many, it’s also an opportunity to put their cured meat products up against the very best in the country.

The American Cured Meat Championships featured more than 650 entries this year, from some of the most renowned small meat processors in the country. The competition was tough, as it always is. At the end of the judging, the Clarence Knebel Best of Show Award went to the Country Meat Shop of Moberly, Mo., for its round deli bacon in the Cured Specialty Meat Products category.

Bardine’s Country Smoke House of Crabtree, Pa. won the Cured Meat Excellence Award for the best overall performance in the ACMC. The company won the Grand Champion award in the Andouille Sausage, Country Bacon – Dry-Cured, Ham – Bone0in (Heavyweight) and Jerky – Restructured categories. It also won two Reserve Grand Champion, two Champion and two Reserve Champion awards in other categories.

The Grand Champions at the 2017 ACMCs are:

Andouille Sausage: Bardine's Country Smoke House Inc., Crabtree, PA

Bacon (Heavyweight): Sailer's Food Market & Meat Processing, Elmwood, WI

Bacon (Lightweight): Dayton Meat Products Inc., Malcom, IA

Braunschweiger: Dewig Meats, Haubstadt, IN

Country Bacon – Dry Cured: Bardine's Country Smoke House Inc.

Cured Specialty Meat Products: Country Meat Shop, Moberly, MO (Round Deli Bacon)

Dried Beef: Haen Meat Packing Inc., Kaukauna, WI

Frankfurters/Wieners – Coarse Ground: Fisher Packing Company, Portland, IN

Frankfurters/Wieners – Emulsified: Holland Bros. Meats, Duncansville, PA

Ham – Bone-In (Heavyweight): Bardine's Country Smoke House Inc.

Ham – Bone-In (Lightweight): Sailer's Food Market & Meat Processing

Ham – Boneless (Commercial): The Durand Smokehouse, Durand, WI

Ham – Boneless (Traditional): Dewig Meats

Ham – Semi-Boneless: Haen Meat Packing Inc.

Jerky – Restructured: Bardine's Country Smoke House Inc. (Formed Jerky)

Jerky – Whole Muscle: Newswanger Meats, Shiloh, OH (Hillbilly Jerky)

Luncheon Meat – Large Diameter: Hermann Wurst Haus, Hermann, MO (German Bologna)

Meat Snack Sticks: Steve's Meat Market, Ellendale, MN (Hot Stick)

Meat Snack Sticks – Flavored: Cunningham Meats, Indiana, PA (Tangy BBQ Sticks)

Old World Dried Fermented Sausage: Northwoods Locker LLC, Clayton, WI (Italian Salami - Wine)

Ring Bologna – Cooked: Louie's Finer Meats, Inc., Cumberland, WI

Semi-Dried Sausage (Cooked, Non-Fermented): Karl's Country Market, Menomonee Falls, WI (Non-fermented Summer Sausage)

Small Diameter Smoked & Cooked Sausage: Tulare Meat Locker & Sausage Co., Tulare, CA (Smoked Brat)

Smoked Turkey: Tiefenthaler Quality Meats, Holstein, IA

Specialty Flavor Small Diameter Smoked/Cooked Sausage: Dayton Meat Products Inc. (Smokey Link Pork Sausage with Cheese)

Specialty Game Meats: Hoff's United Foods Inc., Brownsville, WI (Bison & Pork Summer Sausage)

Summer Sausage – Cooked: Leiding's Meats & Catering, Danville, IL (German Summer Sausage)

(2017 Featured Class) Country Smoked Ham: Dewig Meats

For more pictures, videos and news from the 2017 AAMP Convention, visit