Young Vit Rhys Hall has won 2021 Young Horticulturist of the Year and is the third viticulturist in a row to win the competition. Rhys is assistant vineyard manager of Indevin’s Bankhouse Vineyard and the 2020 Corteva Young Viticulturist of the Year.
He represented viticulture and the wine industry in the latest Young Hort competition, which had been postponed due to COVID. It was held at New Zealand Bloodstock in Karaka, Auckland.
The other contestants represented various horticultural sectors including landscaping, plant producers, arborists, growers and amenities. It was a rigorous competition and over the two days they were tested on a wide range of horticultural and leadership skills. This included practical skills, industry knowledge, business acumen, innovation and public speaking.
Rhys is now the ninth Young Vit to win the Young Horticulturist of the Year competition since it began in 2005. The others are Marcus Wickham, Emma Taylor, Caine Thompson, Stuart Dudley, Braden Crosby, Caleb Dennis, Annabel Bulk and Simon Gourley who are all now senior leaders in the wine industry and whose passion for viticulture is as strong as ever.
Rhys feels humbled to be following in the footsteps of these leaders he admires and is excited about the future ahead.
He has won a prize package including travel and educational grants. He already has an educational trip to France planned with his Ecotrellis Travel Grant from Young Vit visiting the iconic wine producing regions of the Loire and Bordeaux. With his grants from Young Hort he is now looking forward to extending his travels further.
Right now, especially with New Zealand’s borders re-opening, the world really is Rhys Hall’s oyster.
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