A Midland farmers market has been rewarded for giving farmers in the region a fair deal.
Rugby Cattle Market was presented with the award by local customer Brian Swift, from Bicknell.
The Fair Deal Awards were introduced by the Attwood Group trade organisation to recognise buyers that give farmers a fair deal.
They are supported by Localise West Midlands, who said it needs to be recognised that fiar trade was important for farmers in the UK as well as abroad, because power imbalances in trade still exist between big corporations and small producers.
Market chairman Richard Heckford said: “We want to continue the work of 130 years of Rugby Cattle Market. Since opening we have tremendous support from our members and other farmer sellers, despite the restrictions that Defra have put on due to Bluetongue.”
He added cattle markets were important to livestock farmers as they can achieve a better price in a more transparent way. There is direct contact between the seller and buyers, so the markets respond very quickly to trade pressures. But many cattle markets across the nation have closed because of the financial pressures facing the sector.
Mr Swift said it was important to recognise and support local markets in order to cut down on fuel and labour costs.
“Things are going to get harder. Farming doesn’t pay nowadays, and even after diversifying it is difficult.”
The 130-year-old market, which moved to new premises in Stoneleigh Park in May, is run by a co-operative of 250 farmers.