Three postgraduate agricultural students from across the UK have been selected to receive Centenary Awards from the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) Mutual Charitable Trust.

The award was launched by the rural insurer to celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2010 with the aim of supporting agricultural leaders of the future and championing research and innovation within the industry.

NFU Mutual provides annual bursaries to pay up to 75% of course fees for selected postgraduate students in agriculture.

The three students selected for 2023 Centenary Awards are:

  • Megan Phillips from Herefordshire – MSc Sustainable and Efficient Food Production Aberystwyth University;
  • Peter Reis from Cornwall – MSc Ruminant Nutrition, Harper Adams University;
  • Ludo de Falbe from Norfolk – MPhil Crop Sciences, University of Cambridge.

To date, 52 young people have received help through the award to further their education.

Announcing the award recipients for 2023, NFU Mutual chair Jim McLaren said:

“Our Centenary Award bursary scheme aims to champion research and innovation for the UK agricultural industry, whilst also supporting passionate individuals to advance their careers.

“We are delighted to be supporting Megan, Peter and Ludo with our Centenary Award bursaries, and wish them all the very best for their postgraduate courses.”

Award winners

Megan Phillips

Phillips is a graduate trainee at Dunbia and is undertaking her master’s course to support her career aspirations.

“I’ve always been interested in animal genetics and red meat production to help farmers across the UK,” she said.

“The teaching of this master’s degree is allowing me to see the financial and physical positives of experimental ideas which brings both farmers’ opinions and business knowledge into the equation.”

Peter Reis

Reis works full time as a ruminant nutritionist at Mole Valley Feed Solutions and is undertaking his master’s to help bring new and novel techniques to the farmers he serves.

“I have a real passion to learn about and pioneer new feeding techniques to increase the efficiency of dairy, beef and sheep farms in the region, whilst also decreasing the carbon footprint of the industry,” Reis said.

“My goal is to become a leader in nutrition within Cornwall and Devon, and I am very grateful for the opportunity to enhance my knowledge.”

Ludo de Falbe

NFU Mutual said de Falbe is passionate about UK agriculture and the environment. He is undertaking his master’s to explore techniques to develop resilience of crops to climate change.

“My studies include an investigation into gas exchange plants, and how the air spaces in leaves develop, with a view to improving water-use efficiency,” he said.