Phil Acock in the Fourayes Fruit Processing plant

Fruit industry comment and insights from Phil Acock

Phil Acock the third generation member of the Acock family and is the driving force behind innovation, product development and sales at Fourayes. With a lifetime of experience in the fruit industry, Phil reflects on industry developments and market trends in his 'Setting the Agenda' Blog. Phil is also Vice Chairman of English Apples and Pears, the industry body responsible for the English top fruit industry.

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Nov 29, 2018

Today we heard we’d achieved an AA grade in our recent BRC audit. And as there isn’t an AAA grade most of you will appreciate that’s a huge achievement. It’s also a massive credit to everyone in the business, to the systems and processes we use and to our technical leadership. But what does a BRC AA grade reallymean?

Oct 5, 2018

This time, unlike almost everyone else it seems, I’m going to refrain from talking about Brexit; except to say it’s great news that SAWS (the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Scheme) has been reintroduced, at least for the short term, to attract the labour that’s essential for harvesting many British crops. Our own seasonal pickers are largely from the local area (and have been for many years) but I know of many farms that simply couldn’t survive without seasonal workers from countries such as Poland and Bulgaria.

Sep 13, 2018

At 10.30 last Friday (7th September) Helen Whately, MP for Faversham and Mid Kent stood in the Fourayes car park, that used to be a field, in glorious Kentish sunshine, dedicating a building that she referred to as a ‘giant shed’ with more than a touch of irony.

Jul 18, 2018

Over recent months there has been much talk of a Hard Brexit, counter talk of a soft Brexit and very little by way of an alternative to either.

Jun 26, 2018

In The Grocer, 30th June, Stuart Thomson, partner at EFFP points out that a change is coming to British farming – arguably the biggest change ‘since access to the EU and membership of the Common Agricultural Policy.’

May 16, 2018

The subject for my blog this month is ‘paying attention’ or, more correctly perhaps, not doing so. I was minded to write as a result of an incident that happened during a recent recruitment round.

Apr 1, 2018

My interest was first piqued by an article I read about Sunflowers; more specifically about the fact that they always turn to face the sun. The ability of Helianthus to track the sun is known as heliotropism but the Sunflower does more than just follow the sun – it only does so until it has matured. Once its goal is achieved, it simply turns the process off.

Feb 12, 2018

Our corporate video was starting to look a little out-dated. Recently, we’ve employed a number of new staff and invested a significant capital sum in building a new DCA (Dynamically Controlled Atmosphere) store (circa £1m), installing a state-of-the-art aseptic puree plant (£400,000), upgrading the peeling room (£1.3m), significantly improving our IT capability and enhancing our IT security (£60,000); as well as a host of other improvements to the canteen, car park, signage and more.

Jan 4, 2018

Today, I am starting a campaign in support of that most neglected of agenda points: AOB or Any Other Business. Even its very shortening suggests it may not be receiving the respect it properly deserves.

Dec 6, 2017

Some time ago we installed a large digital screen in our canteen. The initiative was prompted, not by a company-wide passion for ‘Emmerdale’, but by a need to largely do away with the posters we’d been using to promote our initiatives, events and customer products: asking staff about the content indicated the posters were veering towards a role more akin to that of ‘wallpaper’.


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21/01/19

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Winner of the Desserts and Puddings category using a Fourayes product. more »

Our Autumn / Winter edition is now available to download.

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This time, unlike almost everyone else it seems, I’m going to refrain from talking about Brexit; except to say it’s great news that SAWS (the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Scheme) has been reintroduced, at least for the short term, to attract the labour that’s essential for harvesting many British crops.

more »

This season red fruits were plentiful and good quality. The weather was good and with farmers now planting varieties to pick over ‘several months’ the small window of opportunity that used to exist to buy fresh strawberry or raspberry has gone.

more »

BRC, Certified Organic, Assured Produce

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