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161021 | Pioneering Cornish farmer dies after long battle with cancer ... - Plymouth Herald

Pioneering Cornish farmer dies after long battle with cancer ... - Plymouth Herald -

Plymouth Herald

Pioneering Cornish farmer dies after long battle with cancer ...
Plymouth Herald
Paul Eustice, the founder of one of Cornwall's best known farm attractions, died earlier this week at the age of 70 after an eight year long battle with cancer.

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Pioneering Cornish farmer dies after long battle with cancer

By WMNAGreenwood | Posted: October 21, 2016

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Paul Eustice with David Cameron in 2009


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Paul Eustice, the founder of one of Cornwall’s best known farm attractions, died earlier this week at the age of 70 after an eight year long battle with cancer.

Paul and his wife Adele first opened the gates of their farm near Hayle to the public in 1979 when it became one of Cornwall’s first ever “pick your own” fruit farms.

Initially the focus was on pick your own strawberries and raspberries but throughout the 1980s the business grew rapidly. By the end of the decade the farm was growing over 30 different fruit and vegetable crops for pick your own and had also established a farm shop and a popular restaurant business.

He also raised thousands for local charities by having a “sin bin” collection at the till to ease the conscience of those customers who had been unable to resist the temptation to eat fruit in the field before paying.

While Mr Eustice is best known locally for his work at Trevaskis Farm, he had a broad career in the farming industry.

The family have bred pedigree South Devon Cattle for generations and, at the age of just 26, Mr Eustice became the youngest ever cattle judge at the Royal Show in Stoneleigh.

 

He was Chairman of the South Devon Herd Book Society twice and was credited with steering the breed through a difficult transition from being a dual purpose dairy and beef breed to becoming a specialist native beef breed during the late 1970s.

He was also well known as one of the largest growers of Cornish winter cauliflowers and spring green cabbage – building a respected brand around the iconic “Cornish Chough” for quality produce that dominated markets in the midlands.

He pioneered the use of lower cost plastic packaging in the vegetable sector during the early 1980s, moving away from the traditional reliance on expensive wooden crates.

Mr Eustice was also an early developer of in field harvesting and packing systems designing and deploying an early prototype of the cauliflower cutting rig which later became universally adopted.

Today Trevaskis Farm is run by one of his sons, Giles, and has grown further in recent years to encompass educational programmes, a popular butchery and expanded restaurant.

Mr Eustice leaves behind his wife, Adele, and their three children, Serena who is a lawyer, Camborne and Redruth MP George Eustice and Giles who now runs the business.


 

Farming Minister George Eustice said: “My father showed extraordinary energy and creativity throughout his business career. He pioneered so many new ideas and different ways of working in farming and was an inspiration to all those who worked with him.

“He had green fingers and when people told him that a particular crop would not grow well in Cornwall he made it his mission to find the answers and prove them wrong. He was the best role model you could wish for and we will all desperately miss him.”

Mr Eustice was diagnosed with a rare cancer in 2008 which led to life changing surgery but he continued to live an active life until the end.

In his later years he became a sponsor of Camborne Rugby Club for whom he had played on the wing in his youth. His funeral takes place at Gwinear Church near Hayle on Monday, October 31, at 2pm.

Paul Eustice with David Cameron in 2009

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