A Worcestershire fruit farm has been named small producer of the year for its hand-pressed pear juice.
Clive?s Fruit Farm in Upton-upon-Severn won the award for their hand-pressed Conference pear juice in a competition organised by Waitrose.
The fruit farm, run by Jane and Charlie Clive, has been in the family since 1911 and grows a wide range of pick-your-own fruits including strawberries, raspberries, cherries, redcurrants, more than 20 varieties of plums, 22 of apples and six of pears.
Mr and Mrs Clive, the third generation of producers, only started making juices, farmhouse ciders and perry in 2002 but have already gained a reputation for their outstanding quality products, winning the award for Best Cox Juice in the West Midlands in the Heart of England Fine Foods Food & Drink Awards.
In addition to their own farm shop, the Clives retail the juices in local farm shops, craft centres and four Waitrose stores (Malvern, Cheltenham, Monmouth and Abergavenny) with a fifth looking probable in the near future.
The winning Conference Pear juice is made from naturally-grown, hand-selected fruit which is then pressed using traditional methods in their juicing shed within hours of being picked.
Waitrose judges, including Henrietta Green of Food Lovers Britain, remarked on the clarity of the juice, which Mrs Clive puts down to the gentle pasteurisation techniques and her own secret recipe.
She said: ?It was a great feeling to get through to the finals and we were delighted that we?d won, it is our reward for all the hard work and long hours that go into making our juices. Hopefully it will help promote the fruit juices to a wider market and lead to further opportunities within Waitrose and other retail outlets.?
Debbie Coxon, Heart of England Fine Foods (HEFF) trade development manager, said: ?We?re always pleased when one of our members receives public recognition for their products and Clive?s Fruit Farm are deserving winners.
?It is a good example to other small, regional producers who are looking to sell into the multiples that it is achievable and HEFF is here to help them make the jump.?