As part of the British Chambers of Commerce’s annual Chamber Business Awards 2022, a fourth-generation family farm in Warwickshire is celebrating after winning the Problem Solver award, sponsored by Cisco.
The awards, now in its 19th year, is one of the showpieces of the business calendar, highlighting the role of firms in delivering growth and prosperity for the UK and local communities. The Problem Solver award recognises the work of a business that has transformed the market that they operate in with their product, in order to gain a strong position in their market.
J C Channing and Sons, a family farm producing renewable energy, is paving the way for the future of the agricultural sector as it took the decision to pivot away from traditional farming and invest in an anaerobic digester, which can ‘digest’ anything from manure to food waste and turn it into electricity.
The business, a member of Coventry & Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce, generates 499kw per hour from the digestor, feeding energy back into the national grid as well as powering the family farmhouse. They plan to expand this by an extra 1MW and sell energy direct to businesses in the local area as well as creating a micro battery charging centre on site for a regional transport operator.
Sarah Howard, Chair of the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) said:
“Channing and Sons has a long history of evolution, with their latest diversification arising out of the changes to traditional farming and the need for sustainability. Many family farms are facing challenges in today’s environment, but Channing and Sons has proven that with creative thinking and investment, the future is bright for the agricultural sector.”
Áine Rogers, Director of SMB UKI at Cisco, said:
“There has never been a more prevalent time to look at how we can become more resourceful and sustainable in our energy consumption methods. J C Channing and Sons demonstrate real ingenuity with their anaerobic digester. The fact that the Channing family are not only contributing back into the national grid, but also minimising waste and supporting other local farmers shows real ‘big picture’ thinking. They have driven true transformation in the farming industry and positioned themselves as key players in the renewable energy market.”