The producers of Australia’s best dried grapes will be celebrated this weekend at Mildura Field Days.

Dried Fruits Australia (DFA) will present awards for the best sultanas, currants, raisins, Sunmuscat and Sunglo, as part of the 2019 Dried Fruit Quality Awards.

An overall winner will also be announced on the main stage at 2.30pm on Saturday 18 May.

DFA Chairman Mark King said the annual awards recognised the hard work and success of the industry’s high achievers.

“This year’s award recipients are all from the Sunraysia region, which produces about 95 per cent of Australia’s dried grapes,” Mr King said.

“The fruit coming out of the region is of excellent quality, so it’s always a difficult decision for our panel of judges.”

Mr King said dried fruit processors Sunbeam Foods and Australian Premium Dried Fruits (APDF) submitted samples of their highest quality fruit for blind judging.

“The entries in each category are assessed on colour, size and taste,” he said.

“Premium sultana, Sunmuscat and Sunglo berries are light amber in colour, uniform in size, and have a typical sweet flavour and soft texture.

“Top quality raisins are a uniform brown colour with a sweet muscat flavour, and currants are small, dark coloured berries with a sweet tangy flavour.”

2019 Dried Fruit Quality Awards category winners

  • Best sultanas: Len and Sandra Burton, Red Cliffs (APDF)
  • Best currants: John and Maria Paradiso, Sunnycliffs (Sunbeam Foods)
  • Best raisins: Stephen and Jinky Nicholls, Coomealla (Sunbeam Foods)
  • Best Sunmuscat: Frank and Lina Mammone, Irymple (APDF)
  • Best Sunglo: Peter and Irene Chamberlain, Cabarita (Sunbeam Foods)