My name is Elliw Grug Davies and I’m a beef farmer’s daughter from Synod Uchaf, Synod Inn, Ceredigion. My interest in the agricultural industry, by working on the family farm since my childhood, has been a huge part of my life. The Young Farmers’ Club has been an essential part of my life as well. I thoroughly enjoy being a member of Caerwedros YFC.
I’ve had many experiences with the federation, from public speaking that has developed my personal confidence which has helped me during job interviews, to stock judging by learning different aspects of different breeds. Meeting new friends and people within this federation has been important to me.
A few years ago I was part of the Agriculture Academy which is a Young People’s Programme with Farming Connect, again I had great opportunities meeting other young people who enjoy working in the agricultural industry, including meeting guest speakers within the industry and discussing agricultural businesses. It was an eye-opener when we all went to Ireland for an educational trip.
Since my time at Ysgol Gyfun Aberaeron I have studied Agriculture at Aberystwyth University. I concentrated on studying business, livestock systems and making the most of grass when farming livestock. Also, I had the opportunity to go on a study tour to Cambridge, visiting arable farms etc. Going to University has helped me to get a good job within the industry.
As well as helping my father out on the family farm, I’ve worked on various farms from conventional and organic dairy farms to a hill sheep farm. My main responsibilities on the dairy farms were milking the cows. I had the opportunity to help out with the lambing on the sheep farm during the winter months and dosing and packing wool during the summer months.
I work full time as a Bureau Operator with EID Cymru (Electronic Identification) at the moment. The company is responsible for dealing and processing licences for when sheep and goats are moved from farm to farm and market to farms within Wales. We also offer assistance for keepers that are creating movements online on the website.
I thoroughly enjoy working as part of a team with EID Cymru. Since starting my new job Covid disrupted things, which meant a different way of working, and by now I work one week at the office and the following week at home. This shows it’s important for us to be flexible for the advantage of the employer and employee.
My hopes for the agricultural industry
I hope that there will be a secure future for farming for young people, and that there will be plenty of opportunities for us. Also, I hope that the public will appreciate farming more, regarding where food comes from and how farms are of advantage to the environment. I would like to see agriculture as part of education in primary and secondary schools, to expand their knowledge and the hard work that farmers put in to ensure that food is on our plates.
Regarding the NVZ’s (Nitrate Vulnerable Zones), I hope that the government will reconsider the policy to make sure that livestock farmers will still thrive and succeed. With producing and buying local food, people need to take farming on a serious note to ensure that farmers will receive every support regarding rural affairs. There is a need for small and large farms to ensure a bright future for farming in Wales. Farming is an excellent example of an industry that contributes to lower carbon emissions. I am eager for the future and what this industry will take on to ensure a successful future.
My hope is to stay and live in my local rural community, but living independently from home. Currently house prices in my local area are too expensive and restrictive planning policies mean that it is very difficult to build a house in the community where I was raised in. I hope changes will be made to ensure that the younger generation can live in the rural communities if they wish, and not just in towns and cities.