This year's food and farming awards, which are being streamed live on the Hereford Times Facebook page on Thursday, June 17, promise to be bigger and better than ever.

A glittering affair, the awards will be hosted by TV presenter and antiques expert Kate Bliss, supported by celebrities, including TV chef Rosemary Shrager, Bake Off runner-up Alice Fevronia and Cheryl Baker.

The farming awards have been expanded this year to incorporate and recognise those businesses that make such great use of the wealth of produce grown in Herefordshire – with restaurants, cafes and tea shops, food and drink producers and local food retailers joining the categories in line for awards to celebrate the multi-faceted nature of our agricultural landscape – from field to fork.

The range of nominations reflects this diversity - with entries from well-established businesses like Oakchurch (nominated in the best farm shop category) and Chase Distillery (nominated for best drinks producer) to smaller operations, among them Foxtail Distillery and Gattertop Drinks, and new businesses like Weobley Ash Meats, which opened just weeks before last year's initial lockdown.

Also nominated are two online businesses Local e-sourced and Taste Herefordshire which brought together many of the county's food producers to ensure that people could keep it local.

While food producers were able to pivot and provide access to their products, many of our hospitality businesses are only just able to re-open, including nominees Nutters (in the Best Cafe or Tearoom category) and Greenman in Fownhope (Best restaurant nominee).

The awards themselves will take place online, hosted by antiques expert and TV personality Kate Bliss, on Thursday, June 17.

Bringing added sparkle to the event will be celebrities, including comedians Henning Wehn and Jason Manford and foodie personalities Rosemary Shrager and Bake Off runner-up Alice Fevronia, delivering messages of support for everyone up for an award.

Awards host Kate Bliss, born and raised in Herefordshire, is passionate about the county she calls home, and about the part the farming community plays in life here.

“Herefordshire is in my blood,” she said. “We should be immensely proud of what our farmers are doing.

"We are so lucky to have such a rich choice of produce so close to home.”

Also adding his support to the awards is Herefordshire soft fruit farmer and former winner, Anthony Snell.

He said: “In 2019 we were fortunate to win the fruit/hop grower of the year category, and were very excited at the end of the event to be presented with a second award being the outstanding achievement award!

“We are pleased to sponsor this year, and would encourage farmers and growers and local businesses to enter the excellent local awards.”

The deadline for the awards has been extended to April 30 to ensure that everyone, particularly those in the hospitality industry only just able to open, is firmly back in business and ready to celebrate their achievements by entering the awards in a year that's been anything but easy.

The award categories

  • Cattle Farmer
  • Poultry Farmer
  • Arable/Fruit or Hop farmer
  • Family-run Farm or Smallholding
  • Farm Conservation and Diversification
  • Best Farm Shop
  • Best Local Food Retailer
  • Best Dairy Producer
  • Best Food Producer (excluding dairy)
  • Best Drinks Producer
  • Best Restaurant
  • Best Cafe or Tearoom

Visit to complete a nomination form.