Farm Sprayer Operator of the Year announced at Cereals

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Steve May

Winner of Syngenta’s Farm Sprayer Operator of the Year is Steve May, arable foreman at Fromant & Sanders, Clarkes Lodge, Kislingbury, Northamptonshire.

Mr May is back in the final four years after making the top six in 2018. He does all the spraying on 810ha of arable crops across both owned and contract farmed land.

Syngenta application specialist Scott Cockburn was one of the judges, and said he was impressed by improvements in the spraying logistics on the farm, which boasts a new chemical store and water supply.

“Mr May is always seeking knowledge and not sitting back,” he said. “He is consistently trying to improve his understanding and has shown this by acquiring the BASIS diploma and FACTS qualification. He is well organised and his attention to detail is very impressive.”

Mr May said he was excited to win the award, which includes a trip to the 2023 Agritechnica event in Hannover, Germany. “I am honoured and pleased to have won,” he said. “I try to improve all the time, year-on-year in what I do. I would like to continue doing what I am doing but also to look into collaboration with the Voluntary Initiative. I feel I have something to give to that.”

He also has a top spraying tip. “Home-made, extended tractor mudguards protect nozzles and keep the sprayer clean in the field as well as preventing mud being thrown onto passing traffic on the road.”

The Syngenta Farm Sprayer Operator of the Year trophy was presented at Cereals by Jonathan Halstead, managing director at Syngenta UK.

The five runners up were Richard Darling – Davison & Co, Great Barford, Bedfordshire; Matt Joseph – Acton Farming Company, Bishops Castle, Shropshire; Ashley Luke – A J Luke Contracting, Frome, Somerset; Andrew Manning – Ramridge Farm, Hitchin, Hertfordshire; and Danny Millazzo – Drysdales, Cockburnspath, Berwickshire.

  • Cereals 2023 will be held at a new venue – Thoresby Farming, in the heart of Sherwood Forest, Nottinghamshire. It will take place from 14-15 June 2023.