Why Hywel would be an effective mentor

  • Welsh-speaker Hywel Morgan believes that keeping cattle as well as sheep on common land in the uplands is part of the solution to the success of upland farms while also contributing to the issues surrounding climate change, loss of biodiversity and wildfires.  His farm adjoins Mynydd Du in the Brecon Beacons. 
  • Hywel has found that grazing his cattle on common land has enabled him to reduce his own farm inputs, while also resulting in habitat management that he hopes will align with future Welsh Government policies.  
  • In the last four years, he has used different forms of innovative technology to manage the cattle which he says has had an outstanding impact on habitat management, wildfire control and also the production of nutritional healthy red meat which he sells direct to consumers. He believes that trackers and virtual fencing – which operate through satellite GPS technology -  will be a future game changer to manage and heft cattle on common land.  
  • Hywel also undertakes conservation grazing on other landowners’ farms which has allowed him to keep expanding his own business. 
  • A former mentee himself, Hywel has tapped into numerous Farming Connect services and personal development projects to help him develop his own farm business.  He took over running the family farm in 2005 after fifteen years working in the agri-food sector.  As someone who has been on both sides of the ‘mentoring’ fence and having sought advice from Farming Connect advisers in the past,  you will find him a ready listener, very willing to share his experiences and help you meet your goals. 
  • He is happy to help all landowners, including those who might be new to farming,  wanting to know more about conservation and upland grazing and has held numerous open days on these topics on his own farm.  
  • Hywel is currently working with the fire service in Wales to investigate the potential risk of wildfires on common land 

Current farm business

  • 156 acre owned upland hill farm in the Brecon Beacons 
  • 30 acres rented nearby
  • Conservation grazing on two additional separate holdings – free grazing in return for managing the land for optimum habitat and biodiversity
  • Herd of 30 Highland and Highland x Shorthorns for upland and conservation grazing
  • Herd of 20 Hereford x Friesian sucklers 
  • Both herds of cattle are put to a Beef Shorthorn bull which results in easy calving and low maintenance livestock
  • Flock of 400 Llandovery White Faced sheep, finished on farm or sold as store lambs

Qualifications/achievements/ experience 

  • Coleg Pibwrlwyd, Gelli Aur campus – OND in agriculture 
  • Farming Connect Agri Academy Leadership Programme
  • Farming Connect Management Exchange Programme
  • British Wool Marketing Board (Carmarthenshire) Representative
  • Nature Friendly Farming Network Steering Group Member
  • WG Antimicrobial Resistance Delivery Group Member
  • Brecon Beacons National Park LAF Member
  • Llangadog Grassland Society - Treasurer
  • Common Land Grazing Associations - Chairman & Secretary 

Top tips for business success 

“Finding the sweet spot between biodiversity and productivity is key, it’s very achievable and a goal all farmers should be working towards.” 

“Now we have left the EU, farmers will only remain sustainable if they adapt the way they work to comply with the demands of climate change, environmental regulations and food production requirements.” 

“Always be ready to listen and learn from others.”