Dovecote Park producers honored at 2018 Waitrose Farming Conference

Wednesday 10th October saw over 400 Waitrose suppliers and delegates gather at Telford's International Business Centre, where we were delighted to see a number of Dovecote Park suppliers recognized for their achievements in the industry.
Wednesday 10th October saw over 400 Waitrose suppliers, producers and delegates gather at the International Business Centre in Telford for the 10th annual Waitrose Farming Conference, with several Dovecote Park directors and Livestock team members in attendance.

This was the third conference addressed by Rob Collins – who opened our bespoke venison facilities back in March – in his role as Managing Director of Waitrose and the second for Paul Walker since taking over the Director of Agricultural Strategy duties following the retirement of Heather Jenkins.
As with last year’s conference, the agricultural climate of an impending post-Brexit Britain featured heavily on the agenda, with environmental sustainability and concerns about profitability in a time of great price pressure also highlighted – the latter ranked as producers biggest concern.

During the afternoon the winners of the Waitrose Farming Awards, were announced for the six categories: Future Proofing, Innovation, Inspiration and Leadership, Partnership and Engagement, Environmental Sustainability and Young Farmer. We nominated producers into nearly every category this year, and were delighted to see our producers receive recognition in three categories.

Beckhithe Farms from East Anglia, received Highly Commended in the Environmental and Sustainability category. Joe Howard from Nottinghamshire received Highly Commended in the Young Farmer category and we were delighted that Joe Mallinson of Dumfries and Galloway won the award for Future Proofing – he was commended by the judges for his work in the venison sector. Will Tudor from Shropshire was featured as one of five finalists in the partnership and engagement category, for his commitment to sourcing cattle from our integrated supply chain Cattle Connect, but sadly didn’t pick up an award.

Once again the conference provided a fantastic opportunity for all partners in the Waitrose supply chains to come together and learn about the importance Waitrose places on its relationships with all its farmers and growers.