Best pick your own farms shortlisted for national awards

Some of the best Pick Your Own Farms in the UK have been named after being shortlisted for the national Farm Retail Awards, sponsored by specialist retailer COOK.

Two of the finalists hail from Yorkshire and one is from Worcestershire. Last year’s winner of this category was Cammas Hall, Bishop’s Stortford, Essex.

The category has been judged earlier than others in the awards in order for the judging to take place at the height of the PYO season, allowing the visits to take place at the peak time of year for these businesses.

Those shortlisted for the PYO category will now go through to the awards in March 2024. They include:

Bells Farm Shop, Stourport-on-Severn, Worcestershire. Bells Farm is a third-generation family run Pick Your Own, Farm Shop, Butchery and Cafe with 40 acres of fruit and vegetables in Worcestershire. Combining traditional growing with new ideas, they aim to bring new customers to enjoy the taste and fun of Picking Your Own and with over 200 varieties of fruit and vegetables there is something for everyone all year round.

Farmer Copleys, Pontefract, West Yorkshire. Farmer Copleys has a family-run farm shop, Moo Café, function space and events centre. The Copley family has been farming for over 140 years with the aim to showcase British agriculture to the community whilst also getting people engaged with the countryside and helping people learn where their food comes from and how it is produced. Visitors are encouraged to get involved in learning about food by educating through fun and offering a unique experience of interacting with homegrown local produce.

Horsforth Pick Your Own, Leeds, West Yorkshire. Rory Kemp established Horsforth Pick Your Own almost 40 years ago in traditional small oak tree lined pasture fields, overlooking Leeds and Bradford. Now joined by his son Joe, the PYO has evolved and they now grow both table top (7.75km) and in the ground strawberries (3 acres) along with raspberries (2.5 acres). For Halloween pumpkins were added in 2018 with pumpkin numbers increasing year on year to currently 70,000. For the festive season, Yorkshire grown Christmas trees are sold along with free-range bronze turkeys reared on the farm from poults, and then hand plucked, hung and dressed.

Chairman of the Farm Retail Association, Emma Mosey said: “The standard of entries have been incredible. We look forward to seeing entrants from all remaining categories now, and celebrating the very best in the business at our awards ceremony next March. Good luck to all of our finalists!”

The remaining categories are now open and other finalists will be announced at the end of the year. These include:

  • Large Farm Shop of the Year – sponsored by Cunninghams EPOS Group
  • Small Farm Shop of the Year – sponsored by The Cress Co.
  • Farm Cafe/Restaurant of the Year – sponsored by Arrange Spaces
  • Farm Shop Butchery of the Year – sponsored by Angel Refrigeration
  • Rising Star Award – sponsored by Fieldfare
  • Farmers Market of the Year – sponsored by Dole
  • Associate Member of the Year
  • Lifetime Achievement Award – sponsored by CSY Retail Systems

Finalists will be showcased at an Awards Gala Dinner held in March on a date and venue to be announced.

All members of the Farm Retail Association are eligible to enter the awards free of charge.

To find out more about joining the Farm Retail Association, contact the FRA team on 01423 546214 or e-mail hello@farmretail.co.uk

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