Baltimore, Maryland, will be the site of the 45th National Chicken Cooking Contest (NCCC), to be held Friday, May 30, 2003, at the Baltimore Convention Center at the Inner Harbor, the National Chicken Council and the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association have announced. The nation’s oldest continually operating cooking competition, the Contest is sponsored by NCC and USPOULTRY to showcase the latest trends in chicken cookery.
Delmarva Poultry Industry, Inc., (DPI), the trade association for the industry on the tri-state peninsula, will host the event and provide the more than 125 industry volunteers who are needed to produce the Cook-Off. Charles C. “Chick” Allen III, President and CEO of Allen Family Foods, Seaford, Delaware, will serve as Chairman of the Contest.
“We’re excited that the NCCC will be back in the area, where it all began,” said Allen. “Chicken is an important industry here. We look forward to welcoming contestants and the news media from around the country to Baltimore.”
First held in 1949 at the Delmarva Chicken Festival in Salisbury, Maryland, the National Chicken Cooking Contest was held annually until 1983, when it moved to an alternate year schedule. The Contest is now one of the nation’s leading food events with a history of more national Cook-Offs than any other culinary competition.
Fifty-one contestants, one from each state and the District of Columbia, will participate in the Cook-Off. First prize is $25,000; four runner-up prizes totaling $11,000 will also be awarded. Contestants will prepare their chicken dishes in mini-kitchens set up at the Convention Center. Fifteen food editors from top magazines and newspapers will serve as judges, and many other top food writers will cover the Contest as news. The event is free and open to the public.
The National Chicken Council represents integrated chicken producer-processors, the companies that produce, process and market chickens. Member companies of NCC account for more than 90 percent of the chicken sold in the United States.
The U.S. Poultry & Egg Association, headquartered in Tucker, Georgia, represents all segments of the industry and conducts a wide variety of scientific and educational programs.
DPI is the nonprofit trade association working for the continued progress of the broiler chicken industry in Delaware, the Eastern Shore of Maryland, and the Eastern Shore of Virginia.