Agrovista has appointed agronomist Lewis Bretton to its Yorkshire team to help meet increasing demand for the company’s services in the county and beyond.
Mr Bretton grew up on a family beef and sheep farm in West Yorkshire. He studied chemistry at Manchester Metropolitan University before embarking on his agronomy career, starting with a master’s degree at Warwick University.
“I wanted to mix my love for farming with my natural aptitude for chemistry,” said Mr Bretton. “That’s when I stumbled upon the idea of agronomy. Being born into a farming family means the passion to work in the industry has always been there.”
His higher degree, ‘Sustainable crop production: Agronomy for the 21st century’ gave him a good foundation in changing agricultural practices and tackling climate change. He then became a trainee agronomist at Lancaster-based Glasson Grain, where he quickly achieved BASIS certification while building a customer base from scratch.
Wide range of soil types
After four years he joined Agrovista to create a customer base closer to his Yorkshire home, where he runs a small livestock enterprise. He is retaining his previous area in the north west, a challenging region with a wide variety of crops, including radish, red beet and potatoes and everything in between, as well as a range of soil types.
“I chose to come to Agrovista after having a few offers – it has always had a good name on farm,” said Mr Bretton. “I was apprehensive about coming to a bigger company but I have been pleasantly surprised about its ethos when it comes to agronomy.
“Agrovista thinks about the customer first – it’s not all about the greatest profit but doing the best job for the crop. The company puts an emphasis on the continued development of agronomists – agronomy is always changing so it is important to keep up to date with new knowledge and information.”
Mr Bretton says he can’t wait to develop his area in Yorkshire and Lancashire while building on his knowledge. “My aim is to be the bridge between science and agriculture, trying to implement new ways of improving agricultural sustainability in a commercially viable way that helps both the customer and the environment thrive. I’m really looking forward to the challenge.”
Simon Vaux, Agrovista’s regional manager for the north, said: “Lewis has already proved himself as a very capable agronomist in the north-west, and we are very pleased to have him on the Yorkshire team.
“He has a good grounding in conventional agronomy and his additional skill sets will undoubtedly be very valuable in helping us manage the challenges the sector faces and in meeting the changing needs of our customers.”