HAILSHAM: Father and son team aim for farming win

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A DAIRY farmer is in with a chance of winning a prestigious award in this year’s Sussex Food and Drink Awards.

Steve and Phil Hook from Longleys Farm in Harebeating Lane, Hailsham, won Sussex Farmer of the Year in 2008 and now the father and son team are in the running to win again.

Hook and Son has gone from strength to strength with its raw organic milk in the last three years.

Their produce was initially just available in the local area but is now sold in three London markets including the famous Borough Market.

It also has a new UK-wide online ordering service which has helped sales more than triple. The product range has also expanded to include cream and butter and has meant an increase from eight to 16 staff in the last two years.

Hook and Son at Longley Farm has been selected as the final five from 50 farmers nominated for the award and now need the support of local people.

Suzanne Craig from Knill James, sponsors of the competition, said, “All five candidates have been chosen for going the extra mile in promoting Sussex food and farming and all have really made a mark on the local produce industry.

“I am delighted to have seen so many superb farmers, from the full length and breadth of Sussex, entered into the awards and it’s been very tough narrowing down the shortlist this year.”

The public is now asked to vote for a farmer at www.sussexfoodawards.biz.

Voting will close on October 2.