* Chocolatier Jo Edwards smashes the world record making her truffles.
A top chocolatier has finally been confirmed as the fastest truffle maker on the planet - after an agonising wait.
The record set by Jo Edwards in front of a huge crowd at last year's Llangollen Food Festival has only just been ratified by the Guinness Book of World Records.
She made 49 truffles in two minutes, smashing the previous record of 47 held by TV chef Gino D'Acampo.
According to Jo, 43, who set up her successful specialist Rossett-based chocolate company, Aballu, in 2006, the wait for the record to be accepted and entered into the record books had been excruciating.
She said: “I had to supply so much evidence including photographs, video and witness statements from the time keepers, my own statement and judges. Each and every and every stage had to be authenticated.
“I even had to supply proof that the ingredients used complied with the recipe supplied by the people from Guinness. It had to be just chocolate and cream but in the right proportions.
“I must admit there were times when I thought I’d never get the world record confirmed and they might turn me down but after 10 months I finally got the news I’d been waiting for and I was indeed the world truffle making record holder.”
Jo will be back at this year’s Llangollen Food Festival that's been recognised by two national newspapers, the Daily Telegraph and the Independent, as one of the Top 10 food festivals in the UK.
She recalled: “It was so tough and I wasn’t really aware of what was going on around me although I knew I had a great deal of support around the demonstration kitchen which is where I went to work.
“The truffle mix was stickier than normal which made the rolling a bit harder than it should have been. And I actually made 54 in the two minutes but, very annoyingly, five were rejected as being either not the right size or the wrong shape.”
“Although I was oblivious to the atmosphere really it was wonderful setting the world record at the Llangollen Food Festival. It certainly created a real buzz around the place and being among so many friend s really made it special.
“I’ve been exhibiting at Llangollen for a long time and have got to know all the other exhibitors. We are all friends and support each other. I always look forward to seeing what new products and recipes are on offer each year.
“This year I’ll just be exhibiting and not setting any new world records. The food festival is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year and Jo is it will be another fantastic event."
She added: “The festival is so important for the region and is actually recognised as being in the UK’s top 10 food festivals and has given the local North East Wales economy an £8 million boost over the last 20 years.
“It has a fantastic reputation within the food industry and beyond and has a great many very loyal followers. It’s an event I always look forward to.
“My Aballu business continues going from strength to strength although I want to keep it quite small and personal. I still work from Rossett and employ two people on a part-time basis.
“I have stuck to my popular range of artisan chocolates but I am working on some new products which I will develop in the near future.”
This year’s festival is on October 14 and 15 and once again it will be held at the iconic Llangollen Pavilion.
Ken Skates, the Clwyd South AM, who is also the Welsh Government’s Cabinet Secretary for the Economy, whose portfolio includes tourism congratulated Jo Edwards on having her world record.
He said: “Llangollen Food Festival is an incredible success and a great annual occasion for the Dee Valley. It’s wonderful to see that Jo, who runs her very successful artisan chocolate business in Rossett, has had confirmation that her new world record is official.
“It’s another success story for Llangollen and the food festival which brings so many economic benefits to the area. It all helps underline the region’s growing reputation as a go-to destination for food lovers.
“Food tourism is something I believe has huge potential for future growth and it is no wonder that North Wales has been hailed as one of the world’s top four must see places to go by The Lonely Planet travel guide.”
Committee member Phil Davies said: “We have an amazing array of fantastic food producers clustered in the area and this year the festival is going to be bigger and better than ever so we’ll be celebrating our 20th anniversary in style.
“We’re heading for a record number of around 130 stallholders with a fantastic choice of produce, along with demonstrations from the region’s finest chefs so there will be plenty to tempt the taste buds.
“I’m glad to say we’re also making a positive contribution the local economy with food lovers travelling from far and wide because the festival is now firmly and rightly established as a major highlight in the UK’s culinary calendar.”
* For more information about the food festival go to www.llangollenfoodfestival.com