Guto Owen is the Farming Connect development officer for Conwy. Guto was raised on the family’s upland beef and sheep farm in Llangernyw, Dyffryn Conwy, where he takes an active role in the management of the farm.
After graduating with a BSc in agriculture from Aberystwyth University, he went on to work as a trainee agricultural manager for a major agricultural supplies company before joining Farming Connect. He believes it’s essential for everyone working within the industry to be open to new ideas and more efficient ways of working, and he's also keen to help farmers reduce the risk of negative impacts on the environment.
“My role is to signpost farm and forestry businesses to the Farming Connect services that can help them make their business more efficient and profitable.
“A good starting point would be a nutrient management plan and a good grazing strategy, which is something I’ve been able to put into practice at our own family farm.
“It’s a challenging time for our industry, but with so much support available, especially for farmers wanting to develop their skills or improve their knowledge, it makes good sense to seek solutions to any personal, business or technical challenges they might be experiencing.”
Guto facilitates discussion groups covering the dairy, poultry and beef sectors, and says he gets tremendous satisfaction when he sees farmers start to make significant gains, which he says often result from relatively small changes.
“Participation within these groups brings farmers valued peer support, and members benefit hugely by talking through issues with each other and through the many advisers (such as vets) who are brought in to advise on specialist topics, such as responsible use of medicines, in line with the aim of reducing antibiotic use.”
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