Welsh farmers are honoured

24 January 2013

Carmarthenshire farmer Robert Ryan Owen of Penywaun, Trap, Llandeilo, one of the founder members of the Carmarthen Farm Liaison Team which was set up to help guide farmers through the bureaucratic maze of complex schemes, quotas and rules imposed on the agricultural industry, has been made an Associate of the Royal Agricultural Societies.

A former field officer with the Ministry of Agriculture, Mr Owen initiated meetings with farmers throughout Wales and worked closely with the farming unions to dispel concerns over complicated form-filling while creating a better understanding of the complexities involved.

The Carmarthen Farm Liaison Team was the pioneer group in the field and as a result of its work a closer and more understanding relationship has been achieved between farmers and the Welsh Government.

Associateship of the Royal Agricultural Societies has also been granted to Monmouthshire farmer Gary Yeomans of Pant Farm, Llanvetherine, Abergavenny.

Mr Yeomans, a Nuffield scholar, studied generic milk promotion in the USA before he started farming on 100 acres in 2001. He diversified into producing goats’ milk for a local cheese-making factory beginning with a herd of 100 young goats in 2002. The farm was visited by HRH Prince Charles who wanted to see the new enterprise.

Today the herd has expanded to 500 goats and the farm also carries a pedigree herd of Welsh Black suckler cows.

In 2007 the farm was one of three that hosted the British Grassland Society’s summer meeting in Monmouthshire and more recently visitors have included representatives of various supermarkets and fresh food retailers who have been shown the goats and milking facilities to help promote the cheeses to the food service sector.

Mr Yeomans is a former chairman of The Future Farmers of Wales, former chairman of Gwent YFC and a past winner of the Wales Management Competition and Wales YFC Rural Enterprise Competition.

Four Associates of the Royal Agricultural Societies in Wales have been made Fellows. They are:

Ellis Davies of Merlands, Llanrhidian, Gower, who became an Associate in 2007 for his contribution to the art of ploughing and his work in encouraging and training Welsh competitors in the skills necessary to compete against the best ploughmen in the world. He is a member of the World Ploughing Association and has recently been appointed to the board of directors of the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society.

Twynog Davies of Frondolau, Pentrebach, Lampeter, is a former Rural Enterprise Adviser of ADAS. Following his retirement he ran the Agricultural Leader 1 programme with the enterprise agency Antur Teifi giving consultancy and training courses for farmers. A former president of Merioneth YFC he has trained young people in stock judging and public speaking and, through his interest in music, many groups of competitors in both the YFC and the URDD, the youth movement in Wales. His dedication to these interests saw him honoured with the ‘white’ robe of the National Eisteddfod for his services to the community and Welsh culture.

Lynn Davies of Pentremeurig Farm, College Road, Carmarthen, was made an Associate in 2007. A progressive dairy farmer he has been actively involved in the affairs of the United Counties Agricultural Society for 45 years particularly in the development of its permanent showground. He is chairman of the Welsh Dairy Show, one of the foremost events in the dairy farming calendar. In 2009-10 he was president of Carmarthenshire Chamber of Agriculture.

Glasnant Morgan of Talybont-on-Usk, Powys, has made a major contribution to farming in the Brecon area. He farms 370 acres in the foothills of the Brecon Beacons and is a former winner of the Farmers Weekly ‘Sheep Farmer of the Year’ award. He won the Welsh Grassland and Environmental award in 2005 and took the UK title in the same year. In 2008 he was the winner of FWAG Cymru National Grid Silver Lapwing Farm Conservation competition. He was invited by the Welsh Government to become a mentor for the Young Entrants Support Scheme where he shares his 40 years farming experience and expertise in grassland management and conservation.