Former student, Chris Chipatiso, celebrates a BAFTA for ‘Our Land’

May 2022

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(NOTE: This is an archived press release.)

The 2022 BAFTA for short form programme has been awarded to 'Our Land'.

The show formed part of ITV's Black, British and Breaking Boundaries series and starred former Writtle University College student Chris Chipatiso. He said: "being recognised for doing something you truly love is a feeling that is unexplainable hopefully this inspires others to chase their dreams as well".

When collecting the award film maker Alexandra Genova said: "Agriculture is the least racially diverse industry in the UK and I hope this film will show that change is possible."

The programme follows the challenges Chris faced in the agriculture sector. He said "As a Black person in the UK there is a bit of a stigma that farming isn't a profession that you're meant to be doing."

Chris received an agriculture qualification from Writtle University College then worked as a carer while trying to launch his farming career.

After facing difficulties in obtaining land, he decided to create an aquaponics system, which produces high, nutritious yields in a competitively small space. 

Bluestream Aquaponics Farm now produces nutritious, organic leafy greens and microgreens in North London. Much of Chris' produce is sold locally, to reduce travel miles and the food's carbon footprint. Chris said: "We recognise there is global food crisis and Bluestream is striving to be at the forefront in creating solutions to the problems we are facing now."

Writtle University College actively works to increase diversity within the agriculture sector. The University College recently announced plans to partner with Wilfred Emmanuel-Jones to support the creation of a new scholarship and the introduction of a residential camp for young Black people wishing to learn more about courses leading to job opportunities within agriculture.

For more information on agriculture courses at Writtle University College, go to writtle.ac.uk/agriculture