Congratulations to the best of UK agriculture

The Food & Farming Industry Awards 2015 has once again proved the highlight of the last weeks of the year (bah humbug to that other tedious thing, I say). The winners, from overall Farm Business of the Year Worth Farms, one of the great winners we’ve profiled in this issue, through every category Winner and every business or individual who has been named as Highly Commended, all provide a fantastic example to UK agriculture. These are the people who are showing the way ahead to a sustainable food and farming industry in what are never going to be easy times.

A particular vote of thanks has to go to the sponsors, who are the people who make it all possible, as well as to the judges, who put a lot of thought in to make what are often very difficult decisions.

Thanks also to our host, MP Neil Parrish, who has been a great supporter of these awards and of UK agriculture, something which makes him unusual in a political world full of people who’d close down farming even as they tell us how vital it is. The venue, in the House of Commons dining room, plays a big part in making the awards ceremony a very special evening indeed.

Thanks most of all to all the entrants. Every one was highly impressive and everyone deserved a win. And if you didn’t enter and didn’t win and deserved to, remember there’s always next year.

Once again, we’ve got a few great reminders of how challenging farming is in the latest issue of Farm Business. I hope the words ‘glyphosate resistance’ on the cover didn’t make you spit out your morning coffee, but we’ve got a report on a presentation by a US expert who’s having to deal with it every day and it doesn’t look nice. As in so many spheres of agriculture, it’s forcing growers in the US to go back and think about how they used to do it.

Farming also faces the challenge of weather that seems increasingly determined to make life difficult, something that’s particularly on our minds the week after Cumbria was hit by such dramatic flooding. We’ve got reports on the concerns of the NFU and the US authorities, who are certainly awake to the threat of climate change.

There’s lots more, from the latest machinery to calls for UK agriculture to become more efficient and to fight to secure its home market. There’s a lot to think about in farming in 2016. I wish you a great holiday. See you in 2016.

Chris Lyddon,
Editor Farm Business

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