When the Missus and I started competing, we wanted to learn what the judges were looking for, so we became certified judges for both KCBS and
Memphis in May (Now called the Memphis Barbecue Association).
There are many other sanctioning bodies throughout the world (yes…world), but we traditionally cook in the KCBS circuit and occasionally do MIM (Memphis in May). The biggest difference is in the judging. In KCBS competitions, the team sends the food to the judges to be judged “blind.” In MIM (or MBA) you send a blind sample for judging, but part of your score is done “on-site”. As far as the team is concerned, there is a lot more work to do when “entertaining” judges on-site. That’s why we like to cook KCBS, but judge MIM!
Sanctioning bodies are always looking for judges…especially certified judges. If you think it is something you would like to do, contact them. For lots of really good information, you may want to subscribe to the
National Barbecue News. This is a monthly newspaper filled with BBQ information which covers most of the sanctioning bodies in the US and gives calendars of upcoming events.