Andrew Stanley Burgess
Director of agriculture, Produce World, on Gerry Rafferty, working with Mother Nature and “unsung hero” Prince Charles
What was your first ever job? One of my earliest memories as a small lad was hoeing carrots on the back of a tractor with my brother Jason.
What’s been your worst job interview? It was with a Scottish seed potato grower for my middle year at Shuttleworth Agricultural College. The job was looking exciting until he explained that my board and lodging costs only left me £20 a month to have fun!
What was the first music single you bought? Baker Street by Gerry Rafferty; it remains one of my ‘Desert Island’ songs.
How do you describe your job to your mates? We grow organic and conventionally farmed vegetables and supply some of the major mults.
What is the most rewarding part of your job? Producing an amazing organic crop and thinking “we did it with the help of Mother Nature”.
What is the least rewarding part? Losing a crop. We lost a field of carrots with purple root rot this year because of the warm, wet winter.
What is your motto in life? ‘Fortune favours the brave’. I never know when I’m beaten.
If you were allowed one dream perk, what would it be? A personal trainer. When I’m not spending down time with my wife and kids, I’m in the gym, so someone to give me a hand would be a bonus.
If you could change one thing in grocery, what would it be? To get people to value the real cost of farming. I also believe the LEAF Marque should be more widely accepted in retail.
What luxury would you have on a desert island? My wife’s cooking and company.
What animal most reflects your personality? They say that a dog is like his master. I have two collie-crossed Jack Russell terriers. They’re clever with boundless energy and they can fight when they have to!
What’s your favourite film and why? Forrest Gump. It’s sad, funny and uplifting.
What’s been the most embarrassing moment in your life? I’m hard to embarrass; ask my girls! It’s usually me embarrassing someone else.
Which celebrity would you most like to work with and why? Prince Charles is an unsung hero. He has a fantastic understanding of the challenges facing farmers and rural communities.