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ABP Journalism Awards

Johann Tasker
01206 263807
Johann Tasker

 ABP Agricultural Journalism Awards

 Three categories - Arable; Grassland/Livestock; Environment/Rural Affairs

Deadline: Not currently open to 2018 entries

The Guild has for many years held annual awards recognising the best in British agricultural journalism.

Sponsored by one of Europe's leading food processors, the ABP Journalism Awards are divided into three categories: Arable, Grassland or Livestock, and Environment / Rural Affairs.

This year's categories are modelled on those generously sponsored for many years by Yara and its predecessor businesses - namely Arable, Grassland/Livestock and Environment/Rural Affairs - with a £1500 prize fund shared by the winning writers.

ABP became an enthusiastic supporter of the Guild last year as lead sponsor of the annual Harvest Lunch - a role it repeated in 2017 - and has engaged with members by hosting visits to two of its advanced UK facilities.

Richard Phelps ABP Agriculture Director“The farming press and the industry’s communicators are vital to progressing UK farming, its sustainability and its innovations,” says Richard Phelps, Agriculture Director, ABP. “We are delighted to renew our association with the British Guild of Agricultural Journalists and would like to wish all participants every success with the awards.”

The judging panel for the Guild's ABP Agricultural Journalism Awards will comprise leading industry figures together with previous winners, with the results being announced at the Guild's Harvest Lunch.

Entries should have been published or broadcast in Great Britain between 1 July in the year preceding entry and 30 June in the year of entry. Entries are limited to one entry per Guild member. Nominations will be accepted from third parties (eg an editor or producer).

To enter, email one copy of your article or broadcast recording to the BGAJ Awards co-ordinator Jamie Day. Your entry must include the author’s name and contact telephone number; the title and date of the publication/broadcast; and a brief description of the purpose of the article.

A full report of the equivalent awards presented by Yara in 2016 and previous years can be found here to get a flavour of the broad range of topics that have brought success in the past.

Mike Abram won the 2016 Arable category for his article on the research-led growing of crops without subsidies in Australia – submitted to Farmers Weekly in a freelance capacity, while Louise Imprey's runner-up piece guided growers on where they could save - or should invest - in their crop fungicide programmes.

The 2016 Grassland/Livestock winner was Aly Balsom for her Farmers Weekly piece on dairy cow body condition scoring for cow health and performance management. Runners-up were Melanie Jenkins for a feature also in Farmers Weekly, on how to sell a TB-restricted herd and Rachel Porter, editor of Cow Management, for an article on dairy farmers who have switched to once-a-day milking.

Farmers Weekly business reporter Jez Fredenburgh won the 2016 Environment/Rural Affairs category for her article on Tesco's fictitious farm brands, with freelance Olivia Cooper scoring the runner-up slot for a series in Farmers Weekly on farm business succession.

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ABP is one of Europe’s leading privately-owned agribusiness companies with 46 manufacturing plants across the UK, Ireland and mainland Europe. The company also operates substantial renewable, pet food and protein divisions. In 2017, the company achieved the Carbon Trust Standard for the third time in recognition for its work on reducing energy use, CO2 emissions, water use and waste output.



The ABP Journalism Awards were first awarded in 2017 at the Guild's annual Harvest Lunch, held at Painters' Hall, London.

2017 Arable category

Phil Clarke (pictured above right receiving the award from George Mullan of ABP) was the winner for his Farmers Weekly article entitled "Chemical reaction" that explored the controversy around the reauthorisation of glyphosate.

Judges said the campaigning feature "successfully rallied the industry to have their say, was well written, and contained a range of views concisely aired."

Runner-up was Louise Impey for her article, also in Farmers Weekly, called "Monitor Farms outline key tips for cost saving" which contained a wealth of practical tips from a number of successful farm businesses. 

2017 Livestock category

Rhian Price was the clear winner for her piece called "A cut above" published in Farmers Weekly. Judges said: “This fact-packed feature spelt out what a switch in silage-making approach could bring. A well-structured and researched article.”

Olivia Cooper was runner up for her piece, also in Farmers Weekly on the control of digital dermatitis in cattle without formalin.

Olivia's piece was described by judges as a “A valuable piece of practical editorial to tackle the common problem of digital dermatitis; technical, interesting and a great example of effective knowledge transfer.”

Laura Bowyer of Farmers Guardian was commended for her piece on salt marsh lamb with a strong environmental angle. “Laura weaves in the story of place and family beautifully.” 

2017 Environment category

Emily Scaife won the award for her "Beyond the Farmgate" piece in Farmers Guardian. A touching story about a farmer, cancer and his journey, judges said it was "sensitively written, with a powerful call to action on the importance of the warning signs of ill-health".

Ben Pike was runner up for his Farmers Weekly piece on the Community Infrastructure Levy and its effect on farm development projects.

Judges said it was a “complicated subject well told, with a range of experts giving clear views and guidance on the issue.”

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