So, you think you make the world’s best pizza?

The world’s biggest pizza competition arrives in South Africa on 24 June and independent chefs from across the country have the chance to win a place in the international final.

Martin Kobald

From its beginnings in 2009, the Global Pizza Challenge has developed into the planet’s biggest pizza competition. The Global Pizza Challenge has moved to Africa’s Big 7, the continent’s premier Food & Beverage Show and The Hotel Show, the premier hospitality event for Africa. Here passionate independent pizza chefs will demonstrate their gastronomic masterpieces first-hand. The challenge runs over three days from June 24 to 26 at Johannesburg’s Gallagher Conference Centre.

The competition is celebrating its 10th birthday this year. The South African winner will walk away with a trophy, R15 000 in cash and will head off for the international final at the end of the year. The top six receive a hamper.

The GPC is backed by chefs’ associations from around the world, but the competition has humble beginnings by chefs who loved pizza, says executive chef Martin Kobald, a GPC judge who is well known to millions in South Africa from TV’s Little Big Cook Off.

‘The challenge was inaugurated in 2009 by a few professional chef friends with a passion for pizza,’ he said. ‘With pizza growing in popularity all around the world at a staggering rate, the chefs wanted to create and develop an international platform for countries to showcase their pizza making skills, cultural flavours and sheer culinary passion. Now we work with chefs’ associations from around the world.’

Kobald who is one of the four judges at GPC Africa 2018, is well known internationally. He is vice president of the Worldchefs Association of Chefs (WACS), and honorary past president of the South African Chefs’ Association (SACA).

After almost 10 years, there are numerous professional chefs involved in organising, judging and managing events across the world.

Competitors for the South African final will be chosen from those who enter their recipe online before June 15, who will be invited to The Gallagher Centre, Johannesburg.