The Inaugural Origin Green Farmer Awards – Horticultural Producers honoured
The Origin Green Farmer Awards recognise and reward the exceptional performance of its Sustainable Quality Assurance schemes for beef, horticulture and dairy. These schemes are pivotal to differentiating Irish food products in the global marketplace; participating farms meet high standards around food safety, animal health, welfare and traceability.
Twelve horticultural producers were shortlisted based on their overall audit performance and each were visited by an independent judging panel and assessed across sustainability topics including crop husbandry, health and safety, farm labour, local community involvement, environmental/biodiversity measures and energy usage. These finalists are among the top performing horticultural farms in Ireland producing high quality fresh produce.
Judging for the Horticulture sector was completed by experts from Teagasc, University College Dublin and I.T. Blanchardstown.
In this edition of Horticulture News we are featuring a full profile of our winner in the Field Vegetable category:
Kilmore Potatoes Ltd
Kilmore, Co. Wexford
John and his brother, Chris Fortune, grow a wide range of potato varieties to cater to a number of market segments, including the planting of salad potatoes to meet a growing market segment commonly meet by imported produce. Kilmore Potatoes provide jobs to 8 full time staff and seasonal workers as required during the season. John is an advocate of changing energy supplier to get the best deals and reduce costs. Integrated pest management is practiced to reduce dependency on Plant protection products
Key sustainability measures:
- Biodiversity measures includes 30 acres of uncropped lands across the farm
- Nutrient management practices includes regular soil analysis aimed at addressing any deficiencies matched to crop needs
- Use of precision GPS guided equipment
- Diversification of varieties grown to access new markets