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Stanton farmer Edward Vipond named Farmer Manager of the Year and Farmer of the Year at Farmer's Weekly awards



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A Suffolk farmer has been named best in the country.

Edward Vipond, of Troston Farms, Stanton, Suffolk, has won both Farm Manager of the Year and Farmer of the Year in the Farmer's Weekly magazine annual awards.

The awards are recognised as one the biggest nights in the farming calendar and reward farmers for innovation, commitment to the industry and hard work.

Edward Vipond receives his award at the The Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London. Picture by Telling Photography
Edward Vipond receives his award at the The Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London. Picture by Telling Photography

Judges praised Mr Vipond's commitment to both the margins and technical performance of the four holdings making up Troston Farms.

They said strong financial and risk management skills marked him out, with an average gross margin of £943 per hectare across 1,542 per hectare, with most of the cropping securing added value.

Mr Vipond grows milling and feed wheat, feed and malting barley, milling and feed rye, spring beans, sunflowers and maize for anaerobic digestion, with five-year average yields for sugar beet and winter wheat at 75.65t per hectare and 8.82 per hectare.

Edward Vipond at Trston Farms. Picture by Jason Bye
Edward Vipond at Trston Farms. Picture by Jason Bye

Mr Vipond, said: "It came as a complete shock to win, but I am very very pleased for the farm and the team."

Benchmarking shows Troston Farms close to the top 10 per cent for winter wheat, spring barley and sugar beet direct costs, with spring barley and beet yields equalling those of the top 10 percent.

Change has been a feature of the Stanton farmer's six years in the job, with several additions of significant acreages requiring meticulous planning and resource management.

Climate and costs risk have seen oilseed rape, sugar beet and forage rye replaced by lower-risk sunflowers and milling rye on the light land.

Mr Vipond runs seed rate, agrochemical, nitrogen efficiency and variety trials, often in conjunction with customers, breeders or suppliers.

The three full-time farm staff have seen change too, with a move from salary to wage and overtime, and their inclusion in discussion of business challenges and objectives, breakfast meetings off farm and involvement in the choice of major machinery purchases.

Mr Vipond is also involved with the Suffolk Show and the Suffolk Farm School Fair and has close links with the local primary school and with a school in Wales for Farmertime.

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