Carmarthenshire farmers raise industry concerns with Plaid Cymru leader

Farmers from Carmarthenshire recently met with Plaid Cymru leader Adam Price to discuss industry concerns including carbon storage, tree planting and climate change, as well as the future of the industry.

Opening the gates to his organic sheep farm Clyttie Cochion was FUW Carmarthen County Chairman Phil Jones, who farms just outside of Carmarthen, Llanpumsaint.

Members and Union officials took the opportunity to highlight that farmers were best placed to help eliminate the effects of climate change but that appropriate support was needed.

Speaking after the visit, Phil Jones said: “There needs to be a range of measures introduced and ways of combating carbon release which will keep Welsh money within the local economy. Family farms bought by large corporations which will be used to grow trees and offset businesses’ emissions outside Wales is akin to selling the family silver.”

Members further discussed concerns about future funding and payments linked to public goods. Phil Jones said: “We know what funding is available for the next year but we are concerned that there is still talk of linking future support to the provision of public goods. The FUW will continue to work with the Welsh Government to work out a funding strategy that supports active farmers and our industry.”

What future might there be for agricultural colleges was also discussed, considering that an area equivalent to 3,100 average sized family farms could be erased from the Welsh landscape if the Government meets their tree planting plans.