We are celebrating after winning three of The Fresh Produce Journal’s UK Fruit and Vegetable Awards and coming second in a further two others.
AC Goatham & Son have won The Fruit Grower/Supplier of the Year Award 2015, The Total Produce Award for Best Supporter of British 2015 and Senior Partner Clive Goatham has personally won the Lifetime Achievement Award 2015, in recognition for his individual work. We were also a second place in the Unsung Hero Award for Dobri Kraev, Packhouse Production Manager at Flanders Farm, Hoo and the Digital Initiative Award for our brand new and innovative consumer facing website.
The Fresh Produce Journal’s UK Fruit and Vegetable Awards are voted for entirely by the readers of the publication and highlight examples of excellence throughout the industry by both individuals and companies.
Ross Goatham, Partner at AC Goatham & Son commented: “We are of course absolutely delighted to have won and been a close runner up in all five categories that we were entered in. I am especially pleased that my Dad Clive, has received this fantastic recognition from his industry peers, for his lifetime’s work in the top fruit industry. Dad has been a pioneer in top fruit, from the difficult times in the 1980’s when many in the industry were grubbing out orchards or selling up, to his ongoing vision to enable the UK to one day be close to self-sufficient in apples and pears, without the need to rely on foreign imports. Dad’s enthusiasm and passion for the industry has seen AC Goatham & Son reinvest all profits back into the business for a number of years, to enable the expansion of packing and cold storage facilities, the investment in new technology throughout the business, the replanting of old and new orchards which will have seen 1 million new trees planted by 2020, over a seven-year period.
“I would also like to thank all our team for their hard work. Whilst we would have liked to have entered all of them for the unsung hero award, we singled out Dobri as the successful running of the fruit through the packhouse and out to the supermarket shelves is absolutely vital to ensure we deliver fantastic Kent grown apples and pears to shoppers up and down the country.”
Michael Barker, editor at the Fresh Produce Journal comments: “AC Goatham & Son is one of the true pioneers in the UK apple and pear industry, and they have made a huge commitment to British production with their various investments in orchards and infrastructure. They are very well deserving of these awards.
“Clive Goatham’s passion and drive has been at the heart of the company’s success, and his hard work over several decades is reflected by the industry selecting him as winner of the Lifetime Achievement award.”