Richardson, who has a 340 sow unit near Wymondham in Norfolk, UK, received the award from Food and Farming minister Lord Rooker during a breakfast in the House of Lords, London, earlier this week.
The winner’s overall assessment of the British pig industry prospects reflected comfort. He said, “The industry has a hard road ahead and some difficult challenges to face, but we are now starting to exploit added value and local sourcing and I believe it has a positive future.”
However, Richardson urged the industry to tackle concerns over the environment and climate change. “The fundamental issues facing the British pig industry are concern for the environment and more particularly climate change,” he said.
“I know some of the people on the ground are very reasonable and practical, but I’m not yet convinced all those at Head Office consider the practicality and viability of farms as very important,” he added.
Richardson also claimed that supermarkets, sometimes suggested to be too powerful, bring good as well as bad.
He said, “I am not going to blame the supermarkets for everything. I think they do take a bit more margin than they should – it’s a two-edged sword because they also make the industry think carefully about the market and the quality of the product.”