NFU Cymru has welcomed the announcement by the Cabinet Secretary for Environment and Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths AM, to invest a sum of £1.5m over the next three years for Hybu Cig Cymru (HCC) to deliver an enhanced export development programme to support the red meat industry in Wales.
The Cabinet Secretary announced the investment into HCC, at Anuga, an international food and drink trade event in Cologne, where HCC were actively promoting the finest Welsh beef and lamb.
NFU Cymru Livestock Board Chairman, Wyn Evans, who is also a beef and sheep producer from Ceredigion said: “As a result of the uncertainty in the industry created by Brexit there has arguably never been a more important time to promote our industry and to seek to grow existing export markets and develop new markets for Welsh red meat in Europe and further afield.
“Whilst the UK market is vitally important to us and an area that we must also continue to grow and add value to, an overseas market helps to increase competition and provides a better carcass balance, thereby increasing the overall value of an animal making it easier for processors to target specific cuts at the right market.
“Wales is leading the way with the Food and Drink Wales Industry Board, the industry is already worth over £6 billion to the Welsh economy and we support the board in its ambition to reach £7 billion by 2020. This new investment by the Welsh Government will help ensure that the Welsh red meat industry can play its part in meeting this ambitious target.”
Wyn Evans concluded: “Welsh farmers produce a top quality product, what we need is the right signals to engender confidence and support jobs, growth and investment in rural Wales, which will help achieve our vision of a productive, profitable and progressive Welsh agricultural industry.”