Committee

Chairman

Oli Pascal

Managing Director – Clock House Farm, Kent

Innovative Soft and Top Fruit Growers, adopting the best technology and approach to fruit growing. Focusing on delivering the best for customer and the environment their farming in. Oli has been a member of Next Gen for 7 years, since the “under 40’s” trip to Benelux. Continued member because of the opportunity to discuss ideas and points with industry piers as well as motivating and industry events that help create enthusiasm and innovation in the industry.

As Under Chair for the last committee, Oli is looking forward to leading the committee for the next two years, continue to grow Next Gen, with some great events and bringing people together.

Vice Chairman

Gail Gribble

Senior Technical Account Manager – Berry Gardens

Gail is a Harper Adams Graduate working in the Produce since graduating in 2014. First joining Next Gen on the trip to Chile in 2019. Keen on being involved because of the way Next Gen pulls together like minded people together to transfer knowledge, skills and approaches for the challenges the industry challenges.

Treasurer

Richard Smith

Sales Specialist – Haynes

Working for Haynes for over 4 years, Richard specialises in the in the sale of machinery to the fruit sector, including Tractors, telehandlers, sprayers and many other implements. Richard first took part with the Under 40s group at an Interim trip to Hereford in 2018, despite not knowing what to expect, enjoyed meeting a lovely group of people from all parts of the industry. With a unique insight into the horticulture sector, Richard is looking forward to joining the committee and pulling together a number of great events.

Events Planner

Anna Ralph

Managing Director – Pixley Berries

Anna hasn’t looked back since first joining a Next Gen trip to Hereford in 2018, being invited by previous Chair Emily Cliff. Managing Director for Pixley Berries since 2020, Anna sees Next Gen as the perfect platform for open conversation on industry matters with likeminded individuals across the country. The visits are thought provoking and the social is a good chance to let your hair down.

Secretary

Rob Wickham

Farm Manager – Garsons Farm

First joining Next Gen at the Winter Wonderland Ball at Hop Farm in 2017, Rob enjoys the environment of Next Gen events, the way sharing knowledge is relaxed and enjoyable. Rob has wanted to be part of the committee since first attending a Next Gen event and is keen to get stuck in. “My main motivation for being on committee is to try and create those scenarios of knowledge exchange, which might never have happened if it wasn’t for this group. That might be on a coach journey, on a farm visit or in a restaurant over a meal.”

Fundraising

Tom Barnes

General Manager – Biddenden Vineyards

Biddenden Vineyards is a family owned and managed Vineyard in Kent. Tom’s first trip was visiting Lower Hope Farms and tour of Chase Distillery in Herefordshire. Enjoying meeting other young growers and people in and around the industry, being able to come away from the day job and be amongst other passionate people is invaluable, with a few beers along the way. Tom recognises the last few years have been tough for everyone on a personal and work level and is looking forward to getting new and old members back together again and continuing an amazing network of people. Tom is passionate for the viticultural sector and ways that Next Gen can support young people within it.

Social Media

Mike Rudge

Commercial Manager – Total Worldfresh

Graduating Harper Adams in 2015, Mike has worked with several roles amongst produce and retail, joining Total Worldfresh in 2019. Alex Myatt invited Mike to his first event in 2019 to Chambers and Hugh Lowe Farms. ‘This group is unique its way of leaving competition at the door and allowing peers to rub shoulders on mutual challenges within our industry, encouraging one another on how to overcome’. Mike is excited to get stuck in with the committee, grow the membership, but ultimately give people an excuse to get together and share perspectives on this fascinating industry.

Under Chair

Alana Deacon

Head of Operations – Hall Hunter Partnership

Alana started getting involved in Next Gen a couple of years ago to understand the wider expanse of UK Soft Fruit and network with other growers.

Alana is curently supporting the current committee as Under Chair, with the view to chair Next Gen Fruit Group from Spring 2024. Alana is excited about the engagement with growers and a chance to engage my passion in fruit farming. Supporting all Next Members to share their passion and the strength of the industry with each other and broader.
But also the opportunity to learn from each other and wider industries.