The expanded category range includes awards for growers of soft fruit, top fruit, cider apples, vines and specialist crops. Run in partnership with the Fruit Focus show, last year's contest saw 27 trophies given out at a glittering awards presentation attended by more than 400 leading professionals.
The benefits of winning are summed up by 2015 winner of the cider growers' award and overall fruit category award, John Thatcher, chairman of Thatcher's Cider: "When we talk to our customers about our innovation in the orchards, it demonstrates that our focus is on producing the highest-quality apples to make into the highest-quality cider. With the UK Grower Awards to back this up, it's not just us talking, it's the view of the industry too, helping open new doors and demonstrating an independent endorsement of our approach by our peers."
Fruit Focus takes place today (22 July) at East Malling Research in Kent. For awards details, see www.thegrowerawards.co.uk.