A STUDENT from Cornwall has come out top in this year's West Country Dairy Awards (WCDA). 

Isabella Rhodes, from Duchy College, has been named as the winner of the 2023 awards. 

The WCDA's provide grants to people studying dairy related training courses. They are open to students living in Devon, Cornwall, Somerset or Dorset. 

Isabella, who is known as Izzy, said she is passionate about studying dairy cow genetics and wants to be a genetics consultant. She has worked on farms while studying, and has also been involved in discussion groups, worked with genetics companies and enjoyed networking groups, such as Women in Dairy. 

The WCDA finals day was hosted by Saputo at their Davidstow creamery where iconic products such as Cathedral City cheddar are produced, with all finalists able to get a tour of the facility. 

Judges included independent farmers, as well as representatives from Saputo, Arla and the National Farmers Union. 

WCDA chair and Devon farmer, Richard Kallaway, said: “The quality and confidence shown by our finalists in their interviews was inspiring but what really shone through was their passion for the industry.

“I say it every year, but these finalists continue to show that the industry will be in safe hands for many years to come.”

In addition to Izzy, the other finalists were: Tim Lyne (Cornwall), Victoria Cordwent (Devon), Lauren Frost (Somerset) and Becca Langford (Dorset).

Applicants were interviewed at county level, with the best five chosen on finals day. 

This year applicants came from a range of Universities and Colleges including: Aberystwyth University, University of Reading, Bridgwater & Taunton College, The Duchy College, Harper Adams University, Newcastle University and University of Surrey.