John Thatcher, third generation cidermaker from Thatchers Cider, has been given a prestigious award by the Worshipful Company of Fruiterers.
The Company’s Matthew Mack Award is made for distinguished achievements in education, training and innovation within the fruit industry, and is made once every three years. It is the first time that the award recipient has been chosen from the cider industry.
At the age of 71, John still plays an active part in the orchard stewardship at Thatchers, and as a past Chairman of the National Association of Cider Makers retains a keen interest in the wider industry throughout Europe. He is widely regarded as one of the country’s leading experts in cider apple orchards.
Presenting the award at the Mansion House in London, Rupert Best, Master of the Worshipful Company of Fruiterers, said, “John’s passion for research and innovation, particularly in the areas of orchard stewardship and orchard sustainability, has led him to be recognised within the sector as one of the country’s most respected cider makers and an ambassador for the industry throughout Europe.
“He is pioneering new ways of growing cider apples, with an emphasis on protecting the environment and improving the quality of the fruit. This includes a substantial investment in the design and manufacture of new orchard management and harvesting machinery. He has entrusted a 120 acre orchard, designed on these principles, to an Apprentice. Such is his belief in the younger generation.
“He is not just a successful farmer and businessman, for he has a generosity of spirit that encourages him freely to share his knowledge with others.
“Above all else, he imparts a respect and a will for quality. He is a leader, a teacher and an innovator.”
For further information, contact:
Penny Adair, Tel: 0117 9041073