Eliot Barden, production and education manager for Majestic Trees, UK, received the Young International Grower of the Year Award at an International Association of Horticultural Producers (AIPH) awards ceremony held on Tuesday 24 January 2023 in Essen, Germany.
This award is part of the AIPH International Grower of the Year (IGOTY) Awards 2023, which celebrates the best of the best ornamentals production. The Young IGOTY category recognises vibrant individuals, aged 25-40, who will lead the industry into the future. Entrants were participants of Jungle Talks’ Pro Manager Mastercourse.
Winner Eliot Barden had an interest in horticulture from an early age and began his education in the subject via a Royal Horticultural Society evening class at the age of 15. He subsequently studied at the Kew Royal Botanic Gardens before joining Majestic Trees in 2018.
Eliot commented: “It means a lot. Thanks to Jungle Talks I’ve seen a lot of production in Holland, in various different sectors, and winning the award is the cherry on the cake. The award is a great recognition.”
Eliot, along with the other finalists, presented his ideas to an international jury of horticultural professionals. The judges were: Leonardo Capitanio, president of AIPH and Vivai Capitanio, Italy; Pablo Bazzani, general manager for Plazoleta Flowers, Colombia, and winner of Young International Grower of the Year 2022; Karolien Tesselaar van Tilburg, Tesselaar Alstromeria, the Netherlands; and Wouter Duijvesteijn, owner of Beyond Chrysant, the Netherlands.
“There are two reasons why we have chosen Eliot Barden the Young IGOTY winner,” said Leonardo Capitanio. “Firstly, he demonstrated accurate technical and professional expertise. Secondly, Eliot continuously invests in the growth and development of his skills in order to reach his highest potential.
“We believe that ‘improving more and more’ is the best solution to be excellent at work as well as in life. We hope that this award will bring Eliot Barden great value and a richly deserved international visibility. Good luck Eliot!”
AIPH thanks headline sponsor Royal FloraHolland, founding partner FloraCulture International, sapphire sponsor GLOBALG.A.P. & GGN Label, pearl sponsors IPM Essen and SB Talee, and awards partner CIOPORA for their continued support of the awards.