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Farming

Farmer awarded for his long service to agriculture

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CHRIS LEWIS from Letterston was praised at the Pembrokeshire County Show last week for his long service to the agricultural industry.

Chris, who started work at Llangwarren Farm in Letterston, and then Chapel Farm in Wolfscastle for 33 years, was one of three people who was awarded for their long service to the industry.

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Farming

MP pledges support to British farmers

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MORE than 4,000 jobs in Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire rely on farming, Simon Hart MP learned during a special event to Back British Farming.

Farming in the constituency contributes £30.6 million to the local economy – on top of the safe, affordable food farmers produce and the British countryside they maintain.

In addition to its role producing food, farming also supports the work of other industries, such as vets, solicitors, surveyors and feed merchants.

The Back British Farming event in Westminster was held by the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) as a rallying call to MPs to support farming – during a particularly crucial period for British farming as the Brexit negotiations begin.

Mr Hart said: “There are so many worthy reasons to support British farmers: they are responsible for securing our fantastic British food supply, looking after our world-renowned countryside and sustaining a dynamic rural economy. That is why I am proud to wear the NFU’s Back British Farming pin badge in Parliament today.

“These reasons are why I have pledged to Back British farming in Westminster and to ensure our decisions in Parliament reflect the strategic importance of British food and farming to the nation.

“As one of the sectors that will be most affected by Britain’s withdrawal from the EU, it is critical that as politicians we create the right regulatory environment to ensure our farmers can continue to provide the safe and affordable food that the public trust and demand.”

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Farming

MP signs pledge to Back British Farming

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STEPHEN CRABB MP has recognised the vital role that Pembrokeshire farmers have contributing to the economy, the countryside and food production as he pledged to Back British Farming at an event in Westminster this week.

Farming in Pembrokeshire contributes £32.6 million to the local economy and provides 4,570 jobs – this is on top of the safe, affordable food farmers produce and British countryside they maintain.

In addition to its role producing food, farming also supports the work of other local industries, such as vets, solicitors, surveyors and feed merchants.

The event in Westminster was held by the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) as a rallying call to MPs to support farming – during a particularly crucial period for British farming as the Brexit negotiations begin.

Stephen Crabb MP said: “There are so many worthy reasons to support British farmers: they are responsible for securing our fantastic British food supply, looking after our world-renowned countryside and sustaining a dynamic rural economy. That is why I am proud to support the NFU’s Back British Farming campaign in Parliament.

“These reasons are why I have pledged to Back British farming in Westminster and to ensure our decisions in Parliament reflect the strategic importance of British food and farming to the nation.

“As one of the sectors that will be most affected by Britain’s withdrawal from the EU, it is critical that as politicians we create the right regulatory environment to ensure our farmers can continue to provide the safe and affordable food that the public trust and demand.”

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Farming

BVD elimination project launched

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AN INDUSTRY led herd screening project, aimed at eradicating bovine viral diarrhoea (BVD) and funded through a £10 million fund recently announced by the Welsh Government, was launched on Thursday, August 31.

Farmers throughout Wales will be urged to participate in the new voluntary eradication programme which has been funded through the Welsh Government’s Rural Development Programme. Called ‘Gwaredu BVD’ (Eradicating BVD), its purpose is to provide the necessary support and guidance to ensure farmers can correctly and quickly identify herds infected with BVD.

The programme will be managed jointly by Coleg Sir Gâr’s Agriculture Research Centre in partnership with the Royal Veterinary College (RVC).

Speaking at the launch, John Griffiths, manager of the Agriculture Research Centre based at Coleg Sir Gâr’s Gelli Aur campus, who is also chair of Wales Animal Health and Welfare Framework’s BVD eradication sub-group said, “BVD in cattle is widespread in Wales, causing annual losses totalling up to £15,000 and £4,500 respectively in the average sized dairy and beef herds. This disease can reduce fertility, increase incidences of abortion and cause pneumonia in affected stock, so it has drastic and long-lasting effects on all farms affected, from both a personal and business perspective.

“This new voluntary disease eradication programme will be conducted alongside Wales’s annual herd TB testing regime to help identify herds infected with BVD. Support will also be available to find the persistently infected (PI) animals from infected herds.

“The testing phase will continue over a three-year period. When complete, we’ll hopefully be in an improved position with regards to BVD in Wales and our ultimate aim is to make Wales BVD free.”

Dr Neil Paton, Lecturer in Farm Animal Health and Production at the RVC, has played a significant part in the project’s development and will act as the Veterinary Technical lead for its duration.

“BVD is an unpleasant virus and represents a significant drain on the UK cattle industry. This new disease eradication programme is the first industry driven initiative that aims to eradicate a disease in Wales.” said Dr. Paton.

BVD is a viral and immunosuppressive disease maintained by a small population of animals that become persistently infected and are a risk to the health of the rest of the herd. This affects the farms production system in terms of cost and animal welfare issues that can lead to pneumonia, scour, infertility and reproductive disorders.

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