Farming Connect Study Visit - Carmarthenshire YFC Agri Group

Carmarthenshire YFC Agri Group


12/11/2021 – 14/11/2021

1    Background

Carmarthenshire YFC Agri Forum meet at least once every three months – whether it be in a local community hall for a meeting, or a visit to a local business or farm to see how they work – and see and share new and old ideas with each other. The group decided to go on this educational trip to expand their knowledge of agriculture and the way it changes day to day. Every individual that went on the trip was different from each other, in terms of age and background, with jobs varying from dairy, sheep and beef farmers, to mechanics, engineers and teachers. It was also important that all visits were of interest to everyone.


1.1    Attendees

  1. Dafydd Evans
  2. Rhys Peach
  3. Carwyn Jones
  4. Katie Sauro
  5. Aled Thomas
  6. Sioned Howells
  7. Betsan Jones
  8. Gethin Jones
  9. Angharad Thomas
  10. Ffion Rees
  11. Iestyn Owen
  12. Martha Sauro
  13. Jack Davies
  14. Aled Davies
  15. Aled Davies
  16. Aled Davies
  17. Cennydd Hughes
  18. Tom Dufty
  19. Eurgan Wyn
  20. Luned Jones
  21. Rhiannon John
  22. Delyth Davies
  23. Owen Phillips
  24. Iestyn Howells
  25. Chris Ludgate
  26. Cathrin Jones
  27. Jordan Chapman
  28. Mari James
  29. Craig Randell

2    Itinerary 

[What did you learn? Provide a description of your activities on each day of your visit and outline your key learning outcomes and knowledge gained]


2.1    Day 1

  • Radnor Hills Water

The first visit to Radnor Hills consisted of two parts: firstly a visit to their production and distribution facilities, as well as a farm visit. The factory tour was an experience to understand how the water is collected, processed, and packaged. The key learning outcome was that with drive and passion, anything is possible, and from starting as a small business, it is possible to expand to supply major retailers, as well as producing their own ‘own-brand’ products. The main surprise to all the party was that the well-known ‘own-brand’ flavoured water seen on nationwide retailer shelves is, in fact, Welsh water. 

  • British Wool Marketing Board

The British Wool Marketing Board provided us with a tour of the factory, to understand what happens to the wool once it leaves the farmyard. It was a learning experience for many on the impact the wool fibres have on value, as well as the use of stock spray etc. In addition, learning the most valuable fleeces is an outcome that may become beneficial to several members upon making changes to any farm business models currently implemented on-farm. 


2.2    Day 2

  • Morgan Tudor, Llysun

Understanding what changes were made to Llysun farm was a valuable take-home message for many of the party. The passion expressed by Morgan Tudor also goes to prove that with determination and drive, anything is possible for the business model. It was interesting to learn the main changes having to be made to the infrastructure, as well as the main take-home message that not everything has to be perfect from the start; it is possible to drive change over a period of time. 

  • Brongain Farm

The scale of the enterprise, as well as the passion, was clearly demonstrated during this visit. Understanding of how an integrated business benefited the business was valuable, together with a better understanding of justification of breeds and production methods. 


2.3    Day 3

  • Trefnant Hall

As with all visits, the desire and success of the Joneses was noticeable by all – once again, showing that passion and drive are the main two aspects needed to thrive within the agri-food sector. The scale and success was proof that it is possible to be successful whatever the topography, and that knowing the land is immensely valuable. Considering the landscape, the recent success had by Mr Mark Jones with the Grassland awards was admired by all.


3    Next Steps

[What are you going to do next? You will have gained valuable knowledge on your study visit which should enable you to put some of your new ideas in to practice or make changes to how you run your business. Draw your report to a close with a summary of action points and next steps for the group which builds on the knowledge gained on this visit and ensures it is put to good use]

Many of the visits demonstrated passion, and it was obvious that with determination and drive anything is possible for the business model. From this, attendees will return to their business (farms, mechanic etc) trying to find out if the techniques and ideas they have learnt from the trip can be implemented in their own business. 

The Agri forum will meet mid-December to discuss the trip, and to discuss some action points and next steps for them to build on the knowledge that was gained, and to make sure that they use what they have learnt in their business model at home, or in their work place.