Managing director Benoit Lamaison headed a Yara UK team attending the annual Harvest Lunch to celebrate the company’s annual journalism awards.
There was a double win for Farmers Guardian, with editor Emma Penny winning the Grassland category award for an article on bio-energy production, and reporter Olivia Midgley heading the Environment section with a feature on the sale of council-owned farms and smallholdings.
Freelance machinery writer Peter Hill won the Arable category with an article in Farmers Weekly on ISOBUS electronic control systems for tractors and implements.
From left: Rosie Carne, Yara UK marketing manager; Emma Penny, Farmers Guardian; Benoit Lamaison, Yara UK managing director; Olivia Midgley, Farmers Guardian; Peter Hill, machinery freelance. Image: Tom Baker, Cowbell Photography.
The Environment category judges, Phil Jarvis, head of farming at the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust; agronomist Dr Ian Richards, who runs the FACTS information service; and last year’s winner, Guild member Peter Hall, farming editor of the Western Morning News, described Olivia’s report as “well researched, clearly explained and to the point, on a topic that is immensely important to the farming community and industry”.
Of Emma’s “well written, informative and timely article” the judges said it held the reader throughout, gave a balanced view from experts and farmers, and showed good use of ‘hard data’ of benefit to a farming business contemplating investment in generating ‘green’ electricity.
The judges for this category were Chris Baylis, farms manager for Sir Richard Sutton’s Settled Estates in Lincolnshire; David Gardner, CEO of the RASE; and 2011 winner Guild member Sarah Trickett, livestock editor on Farmers Weekly.
The judging panel for the Arable category were Gordon Day, John Deere marketing manager; Scottish Borders farmer Colin McGregor; and last year’s winner Mike Abram, now PR whizz at Bayer CropScience.
They complemented the “chatty Q&A style” used for the winning article, which explored the potential of ISOBUS electronic controls to make life easier and more productive for tractor drivers operating increasingly sophisticated field equipment.
“It made the potentially dry subject engaging and interesting, with information presented in bite-sized chunks making it easier for readers to understand the large amount of information included”.