Be recognised for your diversification

Diversifications are many and varied nowadays. Successful ones are great examples of what farmers and their families have always done best – combining creative ideas with sound business thinking to use their assets to best advantage.

The 2011 Farmers Weekly Awards has a category specifically designed to recognise those who are running great diversifications in tandem with a farm.

Just think of the great publicity that winning – or getting shortlisted for – this coveted award could bring your business, not to mention the recognition it would bring for the whole team behind your enterprise.

Whatever your diversification, if you’re doing it well – and it complements the existing farm business – then you should enter this award.

Maybe it’s connected to the leisure sector? The food market? A horse business? Using redundant or converted agricultural buildings? Perhaps it’s a bolt-on enterprise that adds value to your produce?

Your diversification might be well-established or still in its early stages; it might be a completely unique concept or a tried-and-tested one, but let us know if you’re proud of what you’re doing.

Perhaps you’re a dab-hand at making the most of every asset and seizing new opportunities? Particularly energetic about marketing? Came up with a novel idea after extensive market research? Have a tight handle on costs? A clear vision for the future?

Last year’s worthy winners were David and Jayne Newman of Stroud Hill Park in Cambridgeshire, who have a caravan park with 60 pitches, a restaurant serving meat reared on the farm, a paintball site and fishing lake.

The judges particularly liked how the diversification is allowing the farm to thrive, the commitment to customer service and passion for locally-produced food.

The Newmans also impressed with their well-researched ideas, executed to a high standard, their planning for the future, plus the way they enhanced the landscape and had a motivated team who understood their objectives.

The diversification category, sponsored by Firestone, is one of 15 in the 2011 Farmers Weekly Awards, spanning the full breadth of the farming industry, from contractor to countryside, sheep to arable and diversification to dairy.

Entering is a great opportunity for farmers, their families and teams, to be recognised for their hard work, innovation and commitment.

The deadline for entering the awards is the 30 April 2011.

To enter any of the 15 categories of the 2011 Farmers Weekly Awards, download an entry form, enter online or nominate someone.

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