Champion farmer grows sweet strawberries in Manchester hills.

August 02, 2016
Strawberries grown in Jamaica

Lester Murray has been a farmer for a very long time and his undying love and devotion to one of the oldest professions known to man has earned him several prestigious awards, the latest being this year's Champion Greenhouse Farmer.

He was presented with the top award during the official ceremony at the 64 staging of the Denbigh Agricultural, Industrial and food Show on Sunday.

Murray, who is from Manchester, has a one-and-a-half acre greenhouse field under which he grows crops such as tomatoes, peppers, lettuce, and strawberries.

"Strawberry is my latest crop and the reviews from the hotels I supply have been that the quality is far better than the imported strawberries," Murray told THE STAR.

consumed locally

"They say the shelf life is longer and it's a much sweeter strawberry," he added.

With such great feedback, Murray said he will definitely continue producing strawberries because at least 90 per cent of the strawberries consumed locally is imported. He added that there is also less competition in producing strawberries.

"North West Manchester is 2,600 feet above sea level. Other farmers on the plains cannot grow strawberries successfully under the natural ideal conditions so I'm using that to my advantage to avoid competition and contribute to import substitution" he said.

Murray, the 2012 and 2013 national champion farmer, said he managed to cop the top awards so many times because he is doing what he loves.

"I've been doing what God designed me to do. I made a career and a job out of something that I love to do and that makes all the difference," he said.

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