Research and training charity IGD announced a double win for the West Country as both Wyke Farms and Thatchers Cider were announced winners in their respective categories:
Wyke Farms won the IGD Sustainable Future Award, sponsored by Unilever, the company was honoured for its integrated green approach encompassing renewable energy, water recovery, green farming and transport. This forms part of the company’s ‘100% Green’ sustainability plan, through which it has dramatically reduced its carbon footprint and become the first national cheddar brand to be 100% self-sufficient using its own energy generated from solar and biogas.
Fourth generation cidermaker Thatchers Cider won the IGD Business Transformation Award, sponsored by KPMG Boxwood. Chris Milton, sales director who received the award on behalf of the Sandford-based cidermaker says: “The fact that Thatchers Cider was recognised is testament to everyone within the company who has contributed to the growth that we continue to experience. As a family business we have always stayed true to our values, ensuring quality and taste come first, helping us attract new consumers with our heritage ciders such as Thatchers Gold and our new cloudy cider Somerset Haze, launched earlier this year.”
“We are delighted to receive the Sustainable Future Award from IGD. It is wonderful to be a recognised at such a prestigious award ceremony,” said Richard Clothier, Managing Director and 3rd generation family member at Wyke Farm.
Charlotte Carroll, communications director at Unilever, said: “Wyke Farms demonstrated ambition at scale, making a significant investment and commitment to embed sustainability into its business. It is fast becoming a beacon for others in its community, its industry and the international marketplace it operates in, keen to share its knowledge and encourage its suppliers to work in more sustainable ways.
“Motivated by its values and its principles, Wyke Farms demonstrates how to shift an entire supply chain towards a more sustainable business model.”
Matt Clark, partner at KPMG Boxwood, sponsor of the business transformation award, said: “Thatchers Cider’s long-term vision and investment approach has turned a small regional producer into a major brand in a highly competitive industry segment.
“The results are impressive – six times volume and revenue growth in as many years. They tuned into the changing habits of their customers, developed new products, built the brand, expanded production and opened new sales channels. In doing all of this they stayed true to the family values that underpin the business and involved their people and community throughout. As such, the judges were impressed by both the scale and sustainability of the transformation.”
Commenting on the IGD Awards, Joanne Denney-Finch, IGD chief executive, said: “We’ve had some great submissions, demonstrating the leadership, innovation and excellence that our industry has to offer. There’s no doubt that we are operating in challenging times, yet the resilience and originality that members of this industry demonstrate is truly exceptional, from small start-ups to medium-sized companies to large international ones. Many congratulations to all of our finalists and winners.”