The meeting was kindly hosted by NFU Cymru Carmarthen County Chairman, David Gravell who farms with his son, Tom, near Kidwelly.
On a tour of the farm, the Deputy Minister heard from David about the history of the farm, as well as some of the challenges facing all agricultural sectors as a result of very significant spikes in input costs and the uncertainty which lies ahead as the sector moves towards a new agricultural policy for Wales.
The tour of the farm also gave David the opportunity to show the Deputy Minister some of the recent investments he had made on farm and to also talk about the exciting role of innovation and agricultural technology on farm.
Climate change targets
Following the farm tour, the meeting moved to the farmhouse where the conversation examined how the agricultural sector can help deliver on Welsh Government’s climate change targets through a range of measures. These include on-farm use of renewable energy, making gains in production efficiency and improving land management and enhancing land use to capture and store more carbon. The discussion also considered how current barriers to adopting these measures might be broken down through joint working between Welsh Government and the farming sector.
NFU Cymru President Aled Jones said:
“I very much agree with the Deputy Minister’s sentiment that when it comes to climate change and protecting the environment, we need to make the right thing to do the easy thing to do. As part of its contribution to the Welsh Government’s ambition of net-zero by 2050, NFU Cymru has set itself an ambitious 2040 net-zero target, working towards this target without impacting on our productive capacity. By making it easy, attractive and indeed profitable for farmers to do the right thing, Welsh Government can support us in delivering on the target we have set ourselves.”
Also present at the meeting was NFU Cymru Deputy President Abi Reader, who added: “It has been really useful to speak to the Deputy Minister about the use of on-farm technology and innovation, we know that there is a huge role out there for technology in agriculture. The deployment of technology in agriculture and the production efficiencies it can offer are going to be a key means of reducing the sector’s carbon footprint as we move towards our own 2040 net-zero target.”