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Judges praise Nancy Nicolson's video report

Published on 16th August 2012

Nancy Nicolson

The results of several awards run by the Internatinal Federation of Agricultural Journalists were announced at the IFAJ Congress 2012 held in Sweden.

Aberdeen-based freelance Nancy Nicolson earned an honourable mention from the judges of the IFAJ Star Prize for Broadcasting.

Nancy's entry on behalf of the Guild in the online video category covers a conflict between a Government drive for increased commercial tree planting in Scotland and the interests of Scottish hill farmers.

Her video report Sheep producers shun Scottish forest drive complements a print and online article published in Farmers Weekly and on the FWi website exploring on a policy that encourages forestry in areas that former NFU Scotland president Jim MacLaren describes as “the engine room of Scotland’s crucial livestock sector”.

Read the article and scroll down to the video report here.

Breeding mini pigs for biomedical research was the subject covered by the category winner, which was produced by Danish journalist Eric Poulson for LandTV. The judges described it as “an interesting and unique story about an agriculture stream that many may not be aware of; it was also a strong entry in terms of quality and scripting”.

The report, in Danish, of course, can be seen here.

Damien O’Reilly of Ireland won the radio category with a story that looked back on the most recent foot and mouth disease outbreak. Broadcast on RTE Radio 1’s CountryWide programme, the judges said the entry had “a descriptive script with good use of natural sound and strong interviews from people who remember the outbreak. Overall, it was a well-balanced and touching story.”

Kerry Staight of ABC's Landline rural programme in Australia won first place in the television category with her story The future of food.  Judges called it “excellent all around and one of the best features we’d seen on television.”

The report also won the IFAJ-Yara Award for reporting on sustainable agriculture beating 18 other entries from nine countries on the theme: Fuel or food...or both?

The winning piece “touched on many key issues that other entrants in this contest did not mention or even attempt to cover", according to the judges.

"Kerry communicated the complexity of the challenges without confusing viewers, smoothly leading them through many important topics along the entire food chain,” the added.

They also felt the report showed "a good understanding of the issues − from the green revolution and precision agriculture to soil health, food shortages and urban agriculture − weaving them into a coherent whole. Her questions were refreshing and to the point, and she offered a healthy balance between technological and social dimensions.”

Watch her report here.

In the IFAJ Star Prize for Agricultural Photography contest, sponsored by DeLaval, British Guild member, freelance John Eveson, received the second-placed Distinguished Recognition award in the People category for the image below Young handlers' competition.

IFAJ Star Prize photo 2012 - John Eveson

Belfast-based freelance photo-journalist Cliff Donaldson took the overall prize for his photo Spring Lamb, which also won the Production category. All 81 entries can be seen on the IFAJ website.

IFAJ Star Prize photo 2012 - Cliff Donaldson

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