Two leading British farmers have come out on top of a major national awards scheme, scooping up first and second place in the Nitram® Award, one of the prestigious Food and Farming Awards presented at the House of Commons in mid-December.
Winner was Gavin Davis, farm manager at Stowell Farm, West Stowell, Marlborough, Wiltshire, a truly mixed farm supporting a 500-head dairy unit, an AD plant and a rainwater harvesting network. The farm also promotes itself to the public with farm visits, has a functional classroom and milking parlour viewing area.
“Gavin is ambitious, positive and professional,” says CF Fertilisers national business advice manager, Clive Deeley.
“The farm has made significant investments under his leadership, and to maintain profitability in the difficult milk climate, he’s continually looking at ways to increase yields and reduce cost of production while reducing the unit’s impact on the environment.
“New technologies, such as a non-inversion soil system, and varied rotations, are being applied to improve soil management – something CF Fertilisers is continually promoting through the technical advice supporting our products.”
Runner up was Murray Brown who farms at Radstone Estate, Radstone, Brackley, Northants. This is a farm that operates traditional farming practices, combining sustainability with best practice soil management to get the most from his land.
“Gavin is ambitious, positive and professional. The farm has made significant investments under his leadership, and to maintain profitability in the difficult milk climate, he’s continually looking at ways to increase yields and reduce cost of production while reducing the unit’s impact on the environment.”Clive Deeley CF Fertilisers national business advice manager
“Using a local supply of farm yard manure, plus by-product sewage, provides a good soil base. Investment in drainage, ditching and headwalls, plus regular mole ploughing, improves soil structure and drainage,” says Clive. “Tyre pressures are monitored, and dual wheels deployed to reduce compaction.
“Tailored crop nutrient management plans are produced to ensure the correct products are used with optimum application rates.”
Future plans for the farm include a straw powered plant, working alongside the current solar panel site, and the utilisation of more local resources.
“Both these farms are working really hard to become more sustainable, and are looking at ways to become guardians of their most precious product, the soil. They are great examples of everything CF Fertilisers, and the Nitram® brand, hold dear.”
The awards come at the end of what has been a highly successful year for the Nitram® brand, celebrating its 50th anniversary as Britain’s leading fertiliser in 2015.
Research has shown that Nitram® is the country’s most reliable and most trusted product, and this was clearly demonstrate at the Cereals Event back in June, when thousands of farmers visited the company’s stand to join in the celebrations.
In the second half of 2015, there have been 120 special edition gold bag deliveries up and down the UK, with a free goody bag and a voucher off the next Nitram purchase.