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Welsh food and drink companies shine THE CREAM of Welsh food

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welshfoodTHE CREAM of Welsh food and drink producers returned from France last week having promoted the best of what Wales has to offer at one of the world’s largest food fairs. The Salon International de l’Agroalimentaire (SIAL) 2014, which this year was celebrating its 50th birthday, hosted over 6000 exhibitors from 105 countries and is seen as a key platform for the food and drink sector to promote their produce to buyers from all over the globe. 

17 Welsh food and drink companies attended SIAL, under the Welsh Government’s Food and Drink Wales banner, with many returning having made important new contacts, that will hopefully lead to lucrative orders. Following her visit to SIAL, Deputy Minister for Farming and Food, Rebecca Evans AM, reiterated her support for the Welsh presence at such high profile events: “If we are serious about raising the profile of the Welsh food and drink sector on a global stage it is vitally important that we provide a platform such as this for our producers.

We have made no secret of our aspirational targets for the sector in Wales, but I have no doubt that if we have a strategic, integrated approach then our target of growing the industry by 30% by 2020 can be achieved. My visit to SIAL reinforced my views of the strength of the Welsh food and drink industry and I am confident that those producers present at SIAL will benefit directly from the experience.” Cardiff based granola producer – The Good Carb Food Company, was one of the companies on the Food and Drink Wales stand and Director Nigel Bryan felt it was a worthwhile visit: “It can be difficult with such a large event to get your voice heard so it’s great that the Welsh Government lends its support to help us have a presence at such an important trade fair.

Since we launched our company 10 years ago we have become one of the leading producers of healthy granola breakfast cereals and sell our product all over the world. This kind of event allows us the chance to look at expanding our market further and gives us a direct interaction with both present and potential buyers.” Another company hoping to pick up some orders is mid Wales based cake and pudding makers Sidoli &Sons Ltd, as Gilly Barber explains: “Events such as SIAL offer us as producers the chance to show off our wares to an extensive audience but it’s also the chance to highlight new products.

Our new Gluten Free Carrot Cake was making its debut this year and I’m glad to say that it was very popular. It is now a case of following up on that interest and turning it into sales.” North Wales based South Caernarfon Creameries attracted quite a bit of interest with their cavern matured cheddar cheese, as Nick Beadman explains: “In such a large event it is always good to have a product that has a story attached to it and our cheddar cheese, matured 500 feet underground at the Llechwedd Slate Caverns, certainly got people’s attention. It’s a product that very much reflects our Welsh heritage and it’s a very positive partnership with another Welsh icon, the slate caverns. Most importantly though, it tastes great and that, fortunately, was the overwhelming feedback from SIAL.” SIAL was held in Paris on October 19-23 with 17 Welsh businesses in attendance being showcased on the Food and Drink Wales stand.

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Judith Rhead murder investigation – Detectives given more time to question suspect

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POLICE have been given more time to question a 43-year-old man arrested on suspicion of murder.

The man has been in police custody since Saturday night, after being arrested over the death 68-year-old Judith Rhead.

She was found in a residential property in Market Street.

The police now have until Thursday afternoon (Feb 25) to question the suspect.

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All people eligible for vaccination will get theirs by end of July

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PEOPLE eligible for the coronavirus vaccine will get theirs by the end of July, the Health Minister has said.

Wales achieved its target of getting everyone in the first four priority groups vaccinated by the middle of February and is now working on offering the vaccine to those in groups 5 to 9.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has set out that people with severe or profound learning disabilities or with a mental illness will be among priority group 6.

Mr Gething said that they were would make sure that no one is left behind.

The latest figures from Public Health Wales show that 878,506 people had received their first dose of the vaccine.

59,279 people have received both doses of the vaccine.

Vaughan Gething, Minister for Health and Social Services, said: “We have achieved our first milestone of offering everyone in the first four priority groups vaccination by mid-February.

“We are now making progress in achieving our next milestone, which is to offer the vaccine to all individuals in priority groups 5 to 9.

“The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has set out that people with a severe/profound learning disability and individuals with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, or any mental illness that causes severe functional impairment, should be invited for vaccination as part of priority group 6.

“There are challenges with identifying individuals within these groups, particularly given the JCVI language is not generally in use in Wales, and we are working hard to make sure that no one is left behind. Today we have published guidance on identifying eligible individuals in these groups and on how to support them to take up their vaccine offers.

“The JCVI has also said that some of our invaluable unpaid carers should be included in priority group 6.

“Today we have also published guidance on identifying those unpaid carers eligible for vaccine prioritisation and the process around this. I am grateful to the national carers’ organisations for their support with this work.”

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Council want your help to keep Pembrokeshire active

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PEMBROKESHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL is asking residents to give their views on local walking and cycling routes.

The Council aims to make journeys on foot and by bicycle easier, safer and more enjoyable for everyone.

In order to design a network that works for all, the Council would like to get the views of as many people as possible, particularly those who don’t currently walk or cycle. This will help ensure the routes built for walking and cycling work for the whole community.

The consultation focuses on the main towns and villages in Pembrokeshire which have been selected by Welsh Government as the designated localities in the County. These are:

  • Fishguard & Goodwick
  • Haverfordwest
  • Johnston
  • Milford Haven
  • Neyland
  • Pembroke Dock
  • Pembroke
  • Tenby
  • Saundersfoot
  • Narberth

Pembrokeshire Council is currently undertaking an Active Travel Network Map consultation (ATNM) which will run in 3 stages

Consultation 1: Residents can take part in the consultation exercise online, hosted by Commonplace at https://Pembrokeshire.commonplace.is/

The interactive map allows participants to flag issues, problems and successes on a plan of the active travel settlement and add comments. Such points could be for example, a pavement that is too narrow or a newly built cycle route that is regarded as a success.

The first stage of the consultation will close on 31 st March 2021.

Consultation 2: Following this, the second step of the consultation will see the Council share the initial findings and ask people what they think of the plans
proposed as a result of the feedback received.

Consultation 3: The third stage of the consultation will give members of the public a final say on the Active Travel Network Maps before they are sent to Welsh Government for approval. These maps will have been produced taking into account public feedback and ideas from consultations 1 and 2.

By upgrading facilities and creating new walking and cycling routes, the Council plans to make Active Travel the popular choice for local journeys, to increase the attractiveness of local communities as places to live and work, improve health and well-being, and help tackle air pollution.

Cllr Phil Baker, Pembrokeshire Council’s Cabinet Member for Infrastructure, said: “This consultation exercise will produce an Active Travel Network Map which will be a plan of routes the Council will use to inform where improvements to walking and cycling should be made in Pembrokeshire.

“It will help to make journeys on foot or by bicycle easier and safer for everyone, particularly those who don’t currently walk or cycle often and people who use mobility aids and will build on the increased level of walking and cycling that we have seen over the last 12 months during the pandemic.”

See more information on Active Travel at: https://www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/fitness-and-well-being/active-travel

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