Inspirational agricultural contractor’s wife turned mental health champion, Emma Picton-Jones, has done more than most to bring mental health issues in agriculture to the fore, and now she has been presented with a special award by the Farmers’ Union of Wales.
Emma’s husband Daniel took his own life in 2016, and in his memory she established the DPJ Foundation, which is now starting to provide Wales wide support for all farming families struggling to cope with mental health issues.
And at the 100th Royal Welsh Show 2019, the FUW has recognised her achievements by presenting her with the Union’s ‘External Award for Services to Agriculture’ at the President’s reception on Wednesday 24 July.
“Emma has been an inspiration and a pioneer in getting mental health in rural communities across Wales on to people’s agenda,” FUW President Glyn Roberts said.
Read more: Inspirational agricultural contractor’s wife turned mental health champion honoured by FUW
Pembrokeshire beef and sheep farmer, Brian Thomas, who started his farming career at the age of 15, has been recognised with the Farmers’ Union of Wales internal award for services to agriculture.
Presenting the award at the FUW President’s reception (Wednesday, July 24) at the 100th Royal Welsh Show, Union President Glyn Roberts said: “Brian has been a rock solid friend and working partner for over 20 years. He is always willing to help, support and give advice. It is fair to say that Brian is someone I could and can rely on.
“Over the years Brian has gone above and beyond in serving not just this Union but the industry as a whole. He is not afraid to ruffle a few feathers if it means farmers get a better deal, be that through leading protests or campaigning at Government level.
Read more: Pembrokeshire Beef and Sheep farmer honoured for services to agriculture
Farmers from across Wales joined a busy discussion group with Welsh agriculture Minister Lesley Griffiths at a special meeting hosted by the Farmers’ Union of Wales at the Royal Welsh Show (Wednesday, 24 July).
Focusing on the current ‘Sustainable Farming and Our Land’ consultation, which comes to a close at the end of October, members discussed proposals such as future support, the desire of pursuing a single Sustainable Farming Scheme which would be linked to a Sustainable Farming Payment, farmers delivering Public Goods and the possibility of capping and tapering payments.
Speaking after the meeting FUW President Glyn Roberts said: “This is a significant step forward and in essence farmers welcomed the tone of the proposals. However, there are some fundamental differences of opinion. We discussed these in detail with the Minister yesterday and will continue those discussions in the months ahead.
Read more: Farmers engage in future farm policy discussions at Royal Welsh Show
It’s the end of an era. Young farmers are officially old when they reach 26.
But now the FUW has set up a new way of keeping in touch for the over 20s, with a special home targeted at giving younger farmers the chance to keep in touch - and keep on enjoying meeting up.
Read more: Keeping young farmers in the fold - now there is life after YFC
The Farmers’ Union of Wales has reiterated warnings about the disastrous consequences of a no-deal Brexit, as new Prime Minister Boris Johnson takes on the role of leading the country.
“We are absolutely clear, no responsible UK Government would allow the UK to leave the EU without a deal.
“We have been relentless in highlighting the grave economic impacts for agriculture, rural communities and other industries of a hard Brexit.
“The latest analysis by Hybu Cig Cymru suggesting 92.5% of our lamb export trade could disappear if we go over the Brexit cliff on 31st October highlights our concerns,” said FUW President Glyn Roberts.
Mr Roberts said he would be writing to the new Prime Minister, congratulating him on his appointment and would seek a meeting in the near future to discuss the Union’s concerns.
Bovine TB and NVZ regulations were top of the agenda during discussions with Welsh farming Minister Lesley Griffiths, when Farmers’ Union of Wales officials met her during the Royal Welsh Show (Tuesday, 23 July, 2019).
Read more: It’s in Welsh Goverment’s power to lighten burden on farmers - FUW tells Welsh farming minister