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NPA commitment to go 'above and beyond' recognised at National Pig Awards

10th Nov 2016 / By Alistair Driver

The NPA's efforts in going 'above and beyond' to help members were duly recognised at the National Pig Awards on Wednesday night.

NPA AwardAt the Pig World event that recognised excellence and innovation in the pig industry, NPA chairman Richard Lister and the NPA 'A Team' of Zoe Davies, Lizzie Wilson, Georgina Crayford and Andrea Vickers won versions of the Chris Brant award.

They received rapturous and heartfelt receptions from more than 300 people at London's Lancaster hotel as they accepted their awards from NPA vice chairman Richard Longthorp.

  • For the full list of winners at the 2016 National Pig Awards, hosted by BBC sports presenter Hazel Irvine, see the Pig World website here

Special Chris Brant Award

Richard started with a 'Special Chris Brant Award', in recognition that one was not enough this year, stressing that the principles of the award go beyond 'doing a good job or even a very good job'.

In honour of the well-known producer, larger-than-life character and and pig industry activist Chris Brant, who died in July 2009, the award is about 'going the extra mile on behalf of the industry – more often than not time and time again', Richard said.

He described the NPA 'A Team - Zoe, Lizzie, George and Andrea as: Dedicated, Skilled, Professional, Knowledgeable, Articulate, Passionate and Compassionate. 

The industry has seemed as though it has been under siege at times this year, from planning disputes, media pressure around antibiotic use, or 'more sinisterly, from ever more frequent attacks by animal rights extremists', he said.

The citation went on: 

"Many producers will have felt the stress directly from some of these attacks for some of the time.

"But, because they are so woven into the fabric of our industry, the recipients of this Special Award feel the stresses and strains just like we producers feel them. They feel it over every price challenge. Over every misleading media article. Over every extremist incursion. For every pig producer affected.

"Each time a producer feels that gut wrenching churn in their stomach, these guys feel the same.

"Yet they still deliver.

"They may only be 'doing their job' but my goodness do they go the extra mile every single minute of every single day."

The full citation can be read here

Chris Brant Award 

NPA Lister awardThen came the Chris Brant Award. Equally well received, it went to the association's other Richard - Lister, who combines his NPA duties with running pig farms in Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire.

Richard (Longthorp) highlighted for his 'brave and committed leadership'.

The citation added: "Often characterised by his own brand of good humour and cheery disposition, he has nonetheless always brought a steely determination to do the very best for the pig industry

"With a large and successful business at home he has brought a huge amount of knowledge and experience to bear in all those roles.

"Many of the nominations made mention of his exceptional performance on the Panorama programme.

"But to concentrate on this would be to undervalue all the rest of the much more mundane but critically important stuff he has done. Negotiator for BPISG, Chairman of The Pork & Bacon Promotion Council, NPA Producer Group Chairman, numerous committees and now Chairman of NPA.

"Yet in many respects the Panorama programme epitomised the man. He could quite justifiably have dipped out on the grounds that he was too busy or would simply be used as cannon fodder. But he didn’t flinch. He took the pass, made a judgement, went for the line and touched down under the posts.

"As one nomination put it high pressure, high stakes, great output.

"Courageous and Determined - yet good natured.

"Knowledgeable and Successful - yet modest."

The full citation can be read here

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