National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs

Fun, Learning, and Achievement

27 July 2011

It was a case of fourth time lucky for Harleston YFC’s Helen Reeve at the Royal Norfolk Show this year as Helen took first prize in the 2011 Growing Business Award with her herd of pedigree Waveney Dexter cattle.  

The award is an initiative supported by LandSkills East and the Norfolk Farming and Business Forum, which offers training and business development for new entrants. The £5,000 prize money is donated by Anglia Farmers, Clan Trust, Norfolk Farmers Trust, Rackham Trust and the Royal Norfolk Agricultural Association and is used as matched funding to gain LandSkills funding to run the supporting training programme.    

The award was presented to Helen by judges Nicola Currie (CLA), Shane Barnes (Barclays Bank) and Kit Papworth (Anglia Farmers) who were looking for the young farmer who would make the best use of the prize.

Helen said: “Agriculture is a profession that I have been interested in since a very early age and it was inevitable that I would pursue a career in farming after leaving school. My main love is livestock, in particular cattle, so you can probably imagine my delight when, at 14, my parents bought me a Dexter heifer.  

“My herd of pedigree Dexter cattle has grown steadily over the past few years and now totals 34, which has helped to turn my hobby into a business.  Dexter beef is becoming increasingly popular due to its carcase size, taste and texture and it was with this in mind that I decided that rather than just produce beef for my own use, others should be able to experience the delights of Dexter beef.

“I've been a member of Norfolk YFC for a number of years and with the support of the Farming and Business Forum, I entered this award again this year, and I was thrilled to be announced the winner.

“Winning will give my business a much-needed boost. The money will be put towards marketing Waveney Dexter beef in the local area, buying more stock, adding value to existing products such as beef burgers and ready meals, essential pieces of equipment and training.

“The help, guidance and support from everyone involved in the forum and from LandSkills East has been invaluable. And if I could offer any advice to anyone starting up a new business it is to never give up. There may be difficulties in the setting up of various stages of an enterprise but with a bit of determination and perseverance you will see the rewards in the end.”


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