This year’s Scotch Pie Champion is Keith Stuart, production director of Fife’s RT Stuart bakery and butchery chain.

He picked up the trophy at the annual awards ceremony held near Gleneagles in Scotland on St Andrew’s Day last week.

Stuart said he was "over the moon" to be awarded the accolade, suggesting the care and attention he put into his pie had paid off. His pastry shell had been different from "99% of other competitors" as it was more crusty, he added.

In all, 34 awards were presented for Scotch pies, Bridies and speciality savouries. A top diamond prize went to last year’s Scotch pie champion Robert Cowan for his bridies. Scotland’s Nevis Bakery picked up a diamond award for its peppered steak and black pudding pie. Irvine’s of Beith won a gold prize for its "man pie" - billed as a pie full of bull.

The Scotch Pie championship was the culmination of the first Scotch Pie Week, a charity event in which 228 shops took part.

Under the slogan ’Say aye tae a pie’, the event raised money for the Scottish Society for Autism. Event founder Alan Stuart said the week, sponsored by ADM Milling, had been a big success. The money is still being counted, he said, but 100% will go to charity as ADM is covering all administrative costs.

He commented: "We are hoping to get 500 shops involved next year, including some of the bigger chains. We are hoping Greggs will take part - it made a donation this year."