Herefordshire berry grower named NFU award winner

Anthony Snell

Hereford berry grower Anthony Snell is the deserving Midlands winner of the Meurig Raymond Award 2024 for his tireless work backing British farming

A Herefordshire grower whose berries are sold to shoppers across the country has won a coveted award at NFU Conference for his dedication to the county and food production.

Hereford grower Anthony Snell, of Windmill Hill Fruits, Harewood End, was named the Midlands winner of the NFU’s Meurig Raymond Award.

The award is named after the former NFU President and was presented to Mr Snell in front of more than a thousand farmers and industry representatives at the NFU24 dinner in Birmingham on 20 February.

Deserving winner

Anthony runs a first generation farm business with his wife Christine, which he has managed since 1987 producing fresh and frozen soft fruits, grown sustainably for the health of the nation.

They grow and pack more than 2,000 tonnes of strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, blackcurrants, redcurrants, chuckleberries and organic blackcurrants on the farm each year.

A former NFU West Midlands horticulture and potatoes board chair he has also been a staunch industry advocate on its national board, working with those in farming, stakeholders and other organisations for decades.

For the awards the judges looked at how Anthony worked with the NFU regional team on campaigns, his representation of the NFU locally and nationally, his positive engagement and work to drive sector and industry change.

Anthony said: “I was delighted to receive this coveted award at the well-attended NFU Conference dinner in front of 1,200 guests.

“NFU24 was excellent with many speakers including Prime Minister Rishi Sunak who spoke positively about supporting our important British agriculture and horticulture industry.

“I was also pleased to donate some of our Herefordshire grown frozen soft fruits for part of the NFU dinner and these are sold on our exclusive website.”

Flying the flag for sustainable production

Robert Newbery, NFU Midlands regional director said: “Horticulture is often a sector which feels unrepresented, but Anthony has ensured at every point the voice of these members has been heard – both locally and nationally, and within and outside the NFU,” he said.

“In more recent years he has flown the flag for sustainable production within the horticultural sector and the environmental measures which he, and other growers, have put in place.

“This has been critical in a county like Herefordshire where there is huge pressure on farmers to deliver environmental benefits.

“At every opportunity Anthony promotes the work of the NFU and is a huge advocate for everything it does.”

Overdue and well deserved

Ali Parker, NFU Herefordshire county adviser said: “The NFU horticulture and potatoes sector covers a huge range of crops, from tomatoes to garden plants.

“Despite only producing a handful of the crops himself Anthony has always ensured every crop is presented as being equally important.

“The huge amount of respect other horticulture and potato growers have for Anthony is testament to this.

“He is also a very effective ambassador for the NFU with a wide range of groups and people, including the next generation - he has welcomed hundreds of school pupils on farm over the years to learn about what he does and of course eat some of his delicious fruit.

“I am absolutely thrilled Anthony has won this award, which I know he will share with Christine and the team at the family business, it’s overdue and very well deserved.”   

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