Finalists Announced for the Organic Research Centre’s Young Organic Farmer/Grower of the Year Award 2022/23 

November produce harvest at Knockfarrel. Photo Jo Hunt

In August last year the Organic Research Centre (ORC) started their search for the Young Organic Farmer/ Grower of the Year (YOFY) 2022/23.  Someone who could prove themselves a forward-thinking, innovative organic farmer/grower passionate about implementing organic principles. 

After careful consideration by a panel of experts, a strong field of nominees has been whittled down to three finalists: 

  • Adam Payne and Dee Butterley who run a 10 hectare smallholding in Pembrokeshire growing vegetables in an orchard-based agroforestry system. 
  • Alex Parkinson a farm manager for RBOrganic in Norfolk, one of the largest organic carrot growers in the UK. 
  • Sophie and Tom Gregory who operate an organic dairy business on a 400 hectare farm in Dorset. 

The winner will be announced at the National Organic Conference (NOC) on 4th July 2023. NOC is organised by Organic Farmers and Growers (OF&G) and this year is being hosted at Green Acres Farm in Shropshire.  The winner’s prize will be £1,500 and a ‘Complete Grower’s Library’ of books on organic and agroecological farming, worth over £500 from Chelsea Green Publishing who specialise in non-fiction books on the politics and practice of sustainable living.

Lucy MacLennan, ORC’s CEO, says: 

“This is the second year we have run the YOFY Award and we have been immensely encouraged by the quality of entrants, particularly our finalists.  They each operate in very different ways, but they all share a passion for organic farming and demonstrate all the skills required to make a success of their business.  As the need to embrace organic farming methods becomes ever more evident if we are to combat climate change and address biodiversity loss, we are so proud of our finalists for the difference they are making.” 

Roger Kerr, CEO of OF&G adds 

“We are very pleased to be hosting the YOFY Award ceremony this year.  NOC has always aimed to provide a platform for the organic community to come together to meet, to share, discuss and demonstrate organic food and farming in action.  What better celebrate this than through highlighting the work of these young farmers and providing the recognition they so richly deserve.” 

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