As Brexit and its implications are debated daily by politicians and business people throughout the world, there is one thing everyone is broadly agreed upon! We are entering a period of change, particularly for the agriculture industry, but this will undoubtedly bring new opportunities too.
Farming Connect is helping farmers prepare for this uncertain future by encouraging them to tap into the substantial level of services and support available in Wales which will be promoted at a series of ‘Farming for the future’ roadshows this spring.
“Preparing now for what lies ahead and having a business strategy which focuses on those areas within your control is critical to ensure your business is successful and profitable in the future,” is the message from Euryn Jones, Regional Agriculture Director for HSBC, who will chair some of the events.
With others chaired by Professor Wynne Jones OBE FRAgS, who chairs the Farming Strategic Advisory Board, presentations at each event will concentrate on sustainable business development in order to improve economic and environmental performance.
“The key focus will be future-proofing farm businesses and managing volatility, preparing your farm business for the future and the many ways in which Farming Connect can support this,” said Euryn Jones.
Eirwen Williams, director of rural programmes with Menter a Busnes, which delivers Farming Connect, which is funded by the Welsh Government and the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development, said that participants would be encouraged to find out how they can benefit from Farming Connect’s Advisory Service, which can provide registered businesses with four instances of one-to-one advice funded by up to 80% or a maximum of €1,500 each.
The Advisory Service is also available to 'groups' of individuals registered with Farming Connect who want to collaborate and address the same or similar topics, with ‘group’ advice fully funded up to a maximum of €1,500 (euros) per group member.
“Our aim is to encourage all farm businesses throughout Wales to book a place at one of these local events. If you are not already registered with Farming Connect, then you can register when you book your place, either online via our website or by calling the Farming Connect Service Centre.
“There is so much support available but if you don’t know what you are entitled to, or don’t take advantage of the services or funding on offer, you could be putting your business at a disadvantage, “ said Mrs. Williams.
“We will have experts available who can advise attendees on the best way to reduce costs by increasing efficiency across all areas of their business. We will also encourage participants to discuss potential areas for improvement so that we can recommend the right mix of Farming Connect services and support to help safeguard the future efficiency, profitability and resilience of their businesses,” she added.
Attendance at a Farming Connect ‘Farming for the future’ roadshow is a requirement for any individual intending to make an application for the Welsh Government’s Farm Business Grant (FBG) which can provide a one-off grant of between £3,000 and £12,000 for eligible businesses. Eligibility for the Farm Business Grant requires a partner in the business to attend one of these events. The individual attending must be registered as a business partner with Farming Connect and Welsh Government Rural Payment Wales.
It is essential to book your place in advance. For further information on the events and to reserve your place, visit this page or call the Farming Connect Service Centre on 08456 000 813.
Penweddig School, Aberystwyth, SY23 3QN
Newtown High School, Newtown, SY16 1JE
King Henry VIII School, Abergavenny, NP7 6EP
Cerrigydrudion School, Corwen, LL21 9SW
Bro Dinefwr School, Llandeilo, SA19 6PE
Bro Teifi School, Llandysul, SA44 4JL
The Kinmel, Abergele LL22 9AS
The Princess Royal Theatre, Port Talbot SA13 1PJ
Y Ganolfan, Porthmadog, LL49 9LU
Chepstow Race Course, Newport, NP16 6BE
Metropole Hotel and Spa, Llandrindod LD1 5DY
Glyndwr University, Wrexham LL11 2AW
The Pavilion, Haverfordwest, SA62 4BW
Bodedern High School, Bodedern, LL65 3SU
** Doors open for each event for mandatory signing in at 7pm. The events will close at 9.30pm.