Victoria Shervington-Jones, a poultry farmer and businesswoman from St Brides, Newport, has been named as the NFU Cymru Woman Farmer of the Year at the Royal Welsh Show.
The Award, now in its 21st year, seeks to champion the contribution that women make to the agricultural industry and to raise the profile of women in farming.
Victoria runs a successful free range egg business – Country Fresh Eggs, with her family, and has two children aged 4 and 3. The poultry business consists of 39,500 layers, a packing plant and two delivery vans, allowing the business to have full integration of the food supply chain – from producing, to packing and distribution. Their spread of delivery is as far east as Bristol, west to Cowbridge and north to Abergavenny.
Under the banner of Country Fresh Eggs, Victoria visits schools and attends events to talk to members of the public about free range egg production. She has accompanied ‘Cows On Tour’ on various occasions, taking chickens and baby chicks into schools for children to see.
Victoria’s willingness to help out in the local community cannot be ignored: She visits her local primary school to help educate children about farming, she helps out with Open Farm Sunday at a local farm, she assists Maendy YFC with various events and she is also a member of the Vale of Glamorgan Show Committee.
NFU Cymru Deputy President, John Davies, said: “I am very pleased to announce Victoria as the new Wales Woman Farmer of the Year, she is a fantastic role model for women in farming and puts 110% into everything she does.
“It is clear that Victoria is continually thinking of ways to improve her business to make it sustainable long into the future. The recent outbreak of Avian Influenza tested the industry, and Victoria was quick to react; she netted outside areas for her birds, but actually netted far more than the requirement to ensure enrichment for her birds. She was also quick to reassure her customers by informing local papers and ensuring leaflets went out to buyers to keep everyone informed.”
Pat Ashman, Sponsorship and Events Manager, Principality Building Society said: “It’s a real pleasure to be involved with the judging of such an exciting competition. When choosing this year’s winner the panel of judges looked at a number of different criteria including their part in making the farm a successful economic unit and their contribution to improving the role of women in farming. Victoria will make a very good ambassador for all the other women who farm in Wales.”
Victoria received a Welsh crystal glass engraved fruit bowl and £500 prize money.