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'Brexit is an opportunity' says NFU Vice President

NFU Vice President Guy Smith told NFU Cymru members attending the annual Anglesey County Conference that Brexit presents ‘an opportunity rather than a threat’.


Members at the Thursday 5th January meeting held at Cartio Môn on Anglesey heard that the NFU was ready for the challenge Brexit poses for the farming industry.


Speaking during the meeting, Mr Smith told members: “The decision has been made. We’re going to leave the EU and we must unite and move on – we must see this as an opportunity rather than a threat. There’s a big challenge ahead and some key deals to be made over the next 2-3 years that will determine the future of farming for future generations.


“The NFU recognises the enormity of the challenge and we are bringing in new skills and new personnel to ensure we are well placed to meet those challenges.


“Decisions will have to be made as to what the agricultural budget will be and the task for the NFU is to convince the Treasury that the current budget is money well spent. We can certainly argue the case that agriculture underpins the largest part of the British economy in terms of the food and drink industry – that contribution is worth £108 billion to the UK.


“We need to make sure that politicians going into these trade negotiations are in full possession of the facts about the importance of agriculture; the high standards of animal welfare that the industry operates to, the impact it has on the economy and how vital food security is to the UK.”


NFU Cymru President Stephen James also addressed Anglesey members on a number of issues, including the Welsh Government’s recent NVZ and bovine TB consultations.


NFU Cymru Anglesey County Chairman Elwyn Evans said: “We had an excellent turn out for tonight’s speakers and we would like to thank both Guy Smith and Stephen James for providing such informative speeches that sparked some great discussion.”


NFU Cymru would like to thank HSBC Bank for sponsoring this year’s 11 county conferences.