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Visit Farming Connect at the Royal Welsh Show to find out how innovation and technology could be key to a more prosperous future

As farm and forestry businesses throughout the UK prepare to face the challenges and opportunities of trading outside the European Union, Farming Connect will be showcasing some of the industry’s newest and most successful technologies at this year's Royal Welsh Show at Llanelwedd (July 24 – 27) in a bid to help farmers to compete in the new global marketplace.

Innovation and technology will be a key theme at Farming Connect’s usual base in the Lantra Building (Avenue K), and on the first floor balcony of the sheep pens (Stand No. M652) where you will also find this year’s Agri Lab exhibition, a joint collaboration between Farming Connect and the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society.   

“The Show provides a great opportunity for Welsh farmers to see for themselves the results and outcomes of the numerous projects currently trialled on the Farming Connect demonstration network sites,” says Eirwen Williams, director of rural programmes with Menter a Busnes, which delivers Farming Connect on behalf of the Welsh Government and the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development.

The Agri Lab exhibition will bring together a range of companies and individuals who are at the cutting edge of innovation and technology within the industry. Be sure to book your one-to-one business support surgery (24 July), or Precision Farming clinic (25 & 26 July only) soon. Ian Beecher Jones, an expert in independent precision technology, will be available for pre-booked 30-minute sessions to help define specific requirements for investment in tractor and machine optimisation, targeted agronomy and data management. There will also be an opportunity to meet qualified robotic engineer Jonathan Gill to find out how aerial drones and agronomy, currently part of a major research project at Harper Adams University’s National Centre for Precision Farming, could benefit your business. 

Farming Connect will also focus on technology in the Lantra building, where visitors can wear ‘virtual reality’ goggles that provide a 360 degree view from the telehandler’s perspective.

“Our intention this year is to inspire farmers to see for themselves how technology and innovation can support business development. Some of the technology on show, such as the grass plate meter, is already widely used, but by introducing cloud technology and on-line software, the data can be used in a more innovative and accurate way to enhance efficiency,” said Mrs. Williams.

Other items on display in the technology section will include heat sensors for poultry housing; hand held NIRS (Near Infra-red Spectroscopy) grass sampling equipment; genomic testing equipment of female dairy cows and heat detection collars for suckler cows.

 “We hope we have something to appeal to all our visitors, including younger members of the family who will be able to take part in a prize-winning farm Health & Safety competition and climb aboard their own mini-tractor.”     

 

‘Meet a mentor’ – up to 22.5 hours of fully funded support and guidance …

Call in to the Lantra building any show day between 11 am and 12 noon to meet one of Farming Connect’s approved mentors. An important element of Farming Connect’s fully funded mentoring programme, these knowledgeable and experienced individuals will be promoting the benefits of this fully funded ‘one to one’ support initiative throughout the week.

 

Support for woodland owners…

Farming Connect will promote its services to forestry businesses, including the business and technical advice that is available through the Advisory Service. They will be sharing a stand with Coed Cymru, Welsh Woodland Training and assessment specialist MWMAC (Stand No. FOR755). If you are interested in sustainable farm woodland management, adding value to farm timber and improving farm income streams through new planting and the woodland carbon code, be sure to visit. Farming Connect’s technical woodland officer, Geraint Jones, will be available throughout the show, and will also attend the landowner day on the Confor stand (Stand No. FOR 763) from 11am on Wednesday, 26 July, where he will be taking part in a presentation on improving farm income streams through new planting and the woodland carbon code. A question and answer session will follow.

 “Farming Connect provides guidance, training and advice – a range of services and events all geared towards supporting sustainable business development and improving economic and environmental performance. Many services are fully funded, while others, including the Advisory Service, are subsidised by up to 80% for eligible businesses or fully funded for group applications. 

 “The Royal Welsh Show gives us the opportunity to speak directly to farmers and foresters. No eligible businesses in Wales should miss out on the wide-ranging support services which could really make a difference to both their personal and business development, in what remains for many a very challenging economic period,” said Mrs. Williams.  

Booking in advance is essential for any of the one-to-one clinics provided by Farming Connect at the Royal Welsh Show. Click here for more information and to book your place.