David and Helen Brass from The Lakes Free Range Egg Company (The Lakes) travelled to London in November, where they were presented with gold at the Green Apple Environment Awards ceremony held at Westminster. The awards are part of an international campaign to find the greenest companies, councils and communities  and winning gold means ‘The Lakes’ will go forward to the European finals.

The Lakes competed against more than 500 other nominations in the Green Apple Awards for Environmental Best Practice, and were presented with their ‘apple’ trophy and certificate in the Houses of Parliament.

As they received their award, the judging panel commented that they were particularly impressed by the way The Lakes helped preserve and build jobs in struggling rural economies, making agriculture a sustainable business proposition for small family farms.

The Lakes case study demonstrated that ‘developing a business with sustainable animal welfare and environmentally friendly free range egg production does support disadvantaged rural economies’. It was revered by the judges as an example of outstanding environmental good practice and will now also feature in The Green handbook. This book is the leading international work of reference on environmental best practice, so that others around the world can follow their example and learn from their achievement.

Commenting on their success, David and Helen Brass said “It’s not every day you are invited to Westminster to receive an award and it was very gratifying to hear that our focus on long term environmental sustainability encourages others too. For us, excellence in animal welfare and strong environmental provenance go hand in hand; this ethos has also helped our producers and at the same time, is encouraging a rich abundance of flora and fauna to return to our local countryside. Our customers really appreciate what we do too, so it’s a win win for everyone.”

The Green Apple Awards began in 1994 and have become established as the country’s major recognition for environmental endeavour among companies, councils, communities and countries. They are organised by The Green Organisation, an international, independent, non-political, non-profit environment group dedicated to recognising, rewarding and promoting environmental best practice around the world.

The Green Apple Awards are supported by the Environment Agency, the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, the Chartered Institution for Wastes Management and other independent bodies.