Congratulations to Central Hawke’s Bay deer farmers, Tim Aitken and Lucy Robertshawe, who have now been officially confirmed as the 2012 ‘Champion of Champions’ in the Marks & Spencer Farming for the Future Award.
Adding to comments made about the couple’s earlier International Producer category win Steve McLean, Head of Agriculture & Fisheries Sourcing at M&S, says: “Their efforts clearly resonated with our customers as well, as they secured the majority of our public votes, so we are delighted to crown them ‘Champion of Champions’!”
Tim and Lucy are key deer breeders for the Firstlight Venison Producer Group, farming 600 breeding hinds and their progeny at their property near Tikokino. Firstlight solely focuses on producing and marketing high quality young venison, and the 24 farmer-shareholders within the Producer Group work collaboratively to supply to the UK’s top retailers who prefer farm-assured product.
Gerard Hickey, managing director of Firstlight Venison says the company is proud to congratulate the pair. “This award is great news: it vindicates the investment Firstlight Venison has made in developing its UK retail market and we’re pleased to be able to support Marks & Spencer in raising their venison exposure and sales.”