Since 2007 the authoritative foodie magazine and website, Eat Out, has recognised independent South African food producers at a ceremony sponsored by DStv Food Network. Whether it be a delicious new jam, organic yoghurt, rib-eye beef or organic herbs, the winners are a celebration of the best South African food producers have to offer.

Did you know?

Winner of the best local food blog at the Fine Produce Awards 2013 went to Life is a Zoo Biscuit by Anél Potgieter

Winners of the 2013 Eat Out DStv Food Network Produce Awards were announced at a two-day food festival in Cape Town in March.

The ceremony took place at the Biscuit Mill in Woodstock, and was held in conjunction with a day and night market, pop-up picnics and a market-to-table dinner, prepared by some of the country’s top chefs. Stands at the market were run by award finalists, and needless to say a good time was had by all. If you're travelling around the country, look out for some of these special treats.

Best new product

Bacon Jam, made by Cure Deli, a Cape Town meat producer that began life in a garage in Cape Town.

Best small producers

Grocery/condiments: Karma Home Products (range of marmalades)

Dairy/cheese: Pépé Charlot Cheese Maker (the crotin, heart-shaped Pépé and Buche Affinée)

Dairy/other: Gourmet Greek (strained, double-thick Greek yoghurt).

Paddock/fresh: Greenfields (free-range, rib-eye on the bone).

Paddock/cured: Neil Jewell & Co (hand-crafted charcuterie: saucisson sec, squashed salami, cardamom salami and Walter ham).

Earth: Magic Herbs (organic vegetables, fruit and herbs).

Best bakery

The Bread Gypsy (white sourdough, baguette, rye sourdough and ciabatta).

Best organic or free-range producer

Farmer Angus Pasture Reared Food (beef, mince and eggs).

South African food heritage award

Enaleni Farm (zebra beans).

Outstanding markets

South: Neighbourgoods Market, Salt River, Cape Town
East : The Food Market, Umgeni Park, Durban North
North: Pretoria Boeremark, Silverton, Pretoria

Outstanding outlets

South: Wild Peacock Food Emporium, Piet Retief Street, Stellenbosch
East: Spice Emporium, Pine Street, Durban
North: Braeside Butchery, Parkhurst, Johannesburg
Central: Polkadeli’cious Deli, Bethlehem, Free State

Best local food blog

Life is a Zoo Biscuit by Anél Potgieter

The nominations are made by the public, and can consist of small producers, outlets, markets and blog writers. A team of experts including food critics and chefs do the judging. Also taken into account is the producers’ care for the environment and their workforce and all produce must be locally sourced.

Travel tips & Planning info

Who to contact

Eat Out has an extensive list of local producers.

Tours to do

There are gourmet food tours on offer for travellers with a bent for all things culinary.

What will it cost

Generally entrance is free at these food markets but goods are more expensive than they would be at supermarkets because they are hand crafted.

Where to stay

If you're staying in the Western Cape, head for the winelands where you can explore the magnificent food and wine culture of Paarl, Franschhoek, Stellenbosch and many other, smaller towns. Stay at one of the wine estates or at a guest house in the area.

What to eat

Most farmers' markets or weekend food fairs serve freshly prepared food for breakfast or lunch.

What's happening

Don't miss out on fresh produce markets held all over South Africa. These generally happen on weekends and are a great place to taste delicious morsels and mingle with the locals.

Best buys

Jams, meats, cheese, fresh bread, sweet tarts... but if you're flying home, remember that you may not be allowed to bring fresh goods into your home country.

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