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Agri-food specialists unite to support young talent

Posted 7 November 2013

Today’s generation of students will lead the way in building a sustainable and secure future for the food and agribusiness industry."

Andrew Franklin from Rabobank, scholar Liz Andow and Nick Green, from Florette.

Andrew Franklin from Rabobank, scholar Liz Andow and Nick Green, from Florette.

Cheshire student Liz Andow has embarked upon a rare, fully-funded university course, thanks to a generous scholarship package designed to support emerging UK agri-food talent. 

Liz, from Swettenham, near Congleton, has been selected as the 2013 Rabobank Agri-Food scholar at Harper Adams University. This prestigious award is sponsored by Rabobank, the leading global food and agricultural bank, and aims to increase the number of young people choosing a career in the food and agribusiness sectors.

Rabobank provides the winning student with £9,000 per academic year to fund an undergraduate degree. Liz, who is a first year on the BSc (Hons) Agri-business course, is the second of three students who will benefit from the scholarship over a period of three consecutive years. The scholarship also includes a 12-month work placement with an agri-food industry expert. This year fresh produce specialist Florette partners the programme. 

An active member of Congleton YFC 18-year-old Liz said: “It is a privilege to be awarded the highest value scholarship on offer at Harper Adams. Coming from a dairy farming background, I’m keen to explore other avenues within agriculture. Gaining theoretical knowledge at Harper Adams, coupled with a hands-on placement at Florette, will provide me with invaluable industry experience.”

Andrew Franklin, Rabobank’s Head of HR, Wholesale Europe, said: "Today’s generation of students will lead the way in building a sustainable and secure future for the food and agribusiness industry and we are very pleased to be able collaborate with Harper Adams for a second year. At Rabobank, sustainability is one of our core values. The initiatives that take place at Harper Adams in terms of renewable technologies and coming up with long-term solutions to tackle the issue of food security are a strong fit with our corporate social responsibility strategy.”

Nick Green, Head of Purchasing at Florette, added: “The way that Liz articulated her past experiences during the interview impressed me. We hope she will gain a good grounding in all aspects of the Florette business, to enable her to make an informed decision about which area of the industry she would like to pursue when she graduates. At Florette, we recognise the need to train the next generation of managers. But, it’s about the industry as a whole. If all businesses provided a scholarship scheme and encouraged the next generation, there would be a whole new level of skills entering the industry.”

The Rabobank Scholarship is currently the only award at Harper Adams to offer support for each of the three academic years of an undergraduate course, together with the one-year industry placement. The initiative was developed during 2011 in conjunction with Rabobank and the Royal Agricultural Society of England (RASE).

 

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