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Concern for the state of specialist beef production

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THE CURRENT fragile state of specialist beef production was highlighted at a recent NFU Cymru meeting when it was reported that the number of beef cattle, over two years of age, has decreased in Wales by more than 22,000 over the last four years. The figures highlight the problems within the Welsh beef industry of price volatility, cost of production and bovine TB, which are all contributing factors as to why Brecon and Radnor farmers present at the well-attended county Annual General Meeting feared for the future of the national suckler herd.

Addressing the meeting, NFU Cymru Livestock Board Chairman, Lyndon Edwards said, “Cattle finishers had a tough summer season whilst the store trade remained firm. The Irish supply of beef has now started to tighten therefore demand for UK produce is increasing. Margins are tight in the beef sector but I do believe that the prospects for the coming year are better.” Suggestions were made that the Wales Rural Development Programme (RDP) should be delivering on capital grants on practical items such as improving cattle handling systems on farm.

Mr Edwards continued, “We desperately need projects and schemes up and running to deliver RDP support direct to farm level as soon as possible. “Welsh farmers cannot afford to see support lost from direct payments this year without a clear timetable of when they will have the opportunity to recover this support back to their farming businesses.

We need the RDP to be straightforward and any funding must be accessed easily and made available to all farmers throughout Wales.” Looking at the sheep sector, the largest breeding flock of 4.4 million breeding ewes has been recorded in Wales for a decade. Mr Edwards concluded, “Weather conditions were far better for the 2014 lambing season, we have however seen poor practice on the part of some of the retailers during the summer months.

Throughout this I have met with a number of the retailers and impressed on them the need to back Welsh farming through placing PGI Welsh lamb prominently on their shelves. Alongside this we need to explore all avenues of improving lamb consumption at home as well as building new export markets.”

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A40 closed at Scleddau due to collision between car and motorbike

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EMERGENCY SERVICES have shut the A40 at in Scleddau due to a serious road collision.

The accident happened just before 2pm. The Herald understands that the collision involved a motorcycle and car at a junction near The Gate Inn public house.

Police said: “Emergency services are currently on scene and dealing with the incident. Please find an alternative route if possible. Update to follow.”

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Moley’s Ambassador March to support those who have lost a child

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ON SATURDAY (Jun 19), Andrew Cole (aka Moley) will set off on a 24 hour walk around Pembrokeshire with the aim of doing as many miles in as little time as possible. 

Moley is proud to have recently been made ambassador of the charity ‘2 Wish UponAa Star’ an organisation dedicated to supporting families that have lost a child under 25 years of age.

He will be setting off at 6am in the morning from Neyland and walking all day and night, finishing at 6am the following morning.

2 wish upon a star was set up by Rhian Mannings, who set up the charity after losing her own son.

By celebrating the lives of those lost, and offering support to families through their grief; Rhian and her team offer an essential service to the community and those families who have suffered the devastation of losing a loved one.

Appealing for support from the people of Pembrokeshire he said: “Please give generously to support the wonderful work of Rhian and her team. Also, if you happen to see me in the day, feel free to give me a beep of encouragement’

“If you would like to donate to Moley, and support the charity, you can visit his JustGiving page.”

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/moleycole

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Lifeboats and chopper in major air sea rescue off the coast of Tenby

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TWO RNLI lifeboats from both Tenby and Angle stations have been launched to assist a coastguard helicopter which has been scrambled from MOD St Athen.

It is understood that a search for a missing person or persons is underway.

Paged this morning: Angle Lifeboat is currently involved in the search south of Tenby

The alarm was raised before 10am this morning (June 18).

Tenby’s Y-boat is also involved in the operation, The Herald understands.

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Rescue underway: Coastguard chopper position at 1030HRS on Friday, Jun 18 (Pic MarineTraffic)
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