Fine Farm Produce Awards best of the decade
Peter and Gina Smithies from Trehill Farm in Pembrokeshire are the king and queen of all things potato thanks to their consistently high scores in the Fine Farm Produce Awards over the past 10 years. In fact they've won the award in each of the nine years that they have entered, and this year they won for Producer of the Decade.
Summer is a busy time at Trehill Farm. From May to August, potato farmers Peter and Gina Smithies and their team of harvesters are up in the fields early and return late.
They pick their award-winning new potatoes by hand, ensuring each spud reaches the sack undamaged, with its skin still intact.
As the day draws to a close at Trehill, the last batch of potatoes is carried back to the farm where they’re bagged, boxed and dispatched.
It’s a long day, but there are worse places to work. Perched high on the Pembrokeshire cliffs, Trehill’s fields have stunning views across to Skomer Island and the Atlantic Ocean beyond.
The couple have been tenants here since 2001 when they took over from Gina’s parents. They now grow their potatoes across 600 acres of the coastal farmland.
'Our closeness to the sea keeps the fields frost-free,' explains Peter. 'And the sea spray, which soaks our fields, gives our potatoes their earthy sweetness.'
With Trehill Farm’s unique position and the Smithies’ dedication, they have set the standard for potatoes since 2007. And their yearly haul of medals at the Fine Farm Produce Awards has given them the confidence to market their potatoes even more successfully.