Sainsbury's nabs Buyer of the Year accolade

Sainsbury's pork buyer Siobhan Barnes was celebrating last week after taking home the title of Supermarket Meat Buyer of the Year at the Pig & Poultry Marketing Awards 2010.

The awards, organised by Pig & Poultry Marketing magazine, recognise achievements across the sector, from buyers to farmers and marketing initiatives to carcase utilisation schemes.

The meat buyer award, sponsored by MTJ, was split into multiple and non-multiple categories, with Karen Nethercott of Samphire taking the non-multiple title.

Sainsbury's Barnes impressed the judges with her support of British producers and welfare-friendly production, while Nethercott's decision to turn her back on the world of high finance to build up a small-holding and farm shop operation from scratch was equally impressive.

Other winners on the day included Helen Browning Organics, Copas Traditional Turkeys, JA & O Griffiths & Sons/Oaklands Farm, The Rare Breed Pig Company, Denhay Farms, Wm Morrison Supermarkets, The Good Little Company, Anna's Happy Trotters, Packington Pork, The Happy Egg Company, Pink Pig Farm, Moy Park, Gressingham Foods and WF Cornforth & Son/Scalibar Farm.

Caroline Whibley, editor of Pig & Poultry Marketing, said the awards gave businesses of any size the chance to shine: "Good businesses, profitable businesses, can be at both ends of the scale; small-scale producers can provide a bespoke service at a price that enables a good profit, while larger farm business can operate at levels that supermarkets and the foodservice industry demand. It was nice to see more examples of good branding coming along, which UK producers are realising can be their key to added value and differentiation."