FUW WELCOMES PWLLPEIRAN ANNOUNCEMENT.
The Farmers’ Union of Wales today welcomed the Welsh Government’s decision to maintain ownership of Pwllpeiran research farm in Ceredigion.
Deputy agriculture minister Alun Davies revealed at the Royal Welsh Show that the Aberystwyth-based Institute for Biological Environmental and Rural Studies (IBERS) will take over the running of the farm.
“This decision is a major relief for the industry,” said FUW president Emyr Jones.
The proposals include the development of a knowledge exchange centre for upland land use, a cultural heritage centre and two early entrants’ starter farms with an educational support mission linking to skills and training.
Work with IBERS has already started towards a lease commencing in April next year.
Pwllpeiran’s main aim has been to significantly improve the viability of farming in the uplands to ensure continued agricultural productivity in disadvantaged areas while also stemming rural depopulation.
”Therefore, the continuation of existing research and the establishment of new research is great news for the industry,” said Mr Jones.
“For the best part of a century, Pwllpeiran has played an important role in the development of agriculture in Wales and in terms of global agriculture.
“Closing this facility would have been a step backwards for agriculture in Wales as there is no doubt thousands of farming families such as my own owe our very existence to the work being carried out there,” added Mr Jones, whose Bala upland beef and sheep farm won the British Grassland Society's top UK grassland award in 2008.
The FUW has made representations to the minister and attended various meetings outlining its concerns about the proposed closure of Pwllpeiran.
Against a background of rising global populations and diminishing natural resources, the union stressed that it is essential research work is undertaken to allow farmers to produce more food while having less impact on our environment.
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